Sky-rocketing electricity prices in Cyprus won’t go down even one cent for the moment despite a crunch meeting on Friday at the Presidential Palace aiming to alleviate consumers’ pain.
President Nicos Anastasiades had requested a meeting with the ministers of energy and finance, the Cyprus Energy Regulation Authority (CERA) and the Electricity Authority of Cyprus (EAC) demanding a reduction in the price of electricity.
But those hoping for immediate relief from the continuous surge in energy prices through either tax reductions or imposition of a ceiling on electricity tariffs were disappointed.
They only heard top officials talking about longer-term solutions with the only ‘immediate’ commitment being the possibility of economically vulnerable households becoming eligible to discount coupons.
What was basically decided at the long meeting were seven main points which focus on investing in and diversifying the island’s energy portfolio – relying on EU funds to secure more green and renewable energy.
Also announced was that the government is evaluating new measures which can be brought in from August 31 when the current VAT reductions on electricity are set to end.
In May, the Cabinet decided to extend the reduction in VAT on electricity from 19 per cent to 9 per cent for all households, and from 19 per cent to 5 per cent for vulnerable groups until August.
Moreover, it was agreed at the meeting that they will investigate ways to increase the percentage of renewable energy produced by the EAC – which will necessitate cooperation with CERA.
In addition, an information campaign is planned to help enlighten the public on ways to save energy.