This meeting aimed to ensure the commitment of all suppliers to implement support measures for businesses and communities in 2023 in the context of the energy crisis.
The ministers first recalled the exceptional effort that the State is devoting to supporting businesses and communities in 2023, through several previously announced measures:
- Maintaining the reduction in electricity taxation at its minimum level;
- Tariff shields for VSEs eligible for regulated tariffs on the basis of a limitation of the increase in the prices of regulated tariffs for the sale of electricity to 15% including tax on average;
- The new electric shock absorber for all local authorities as well as for VSEs and SMEs not eligible for the tariff shield and entities with more than 50% of their revenue from public funding, assigned taxes, donations or contributions;
- The safety net for local authorities, which can be combined with the shock absorber or the shield;
- The assistance counter system for electro-intensive companies, effective since September 2022 and extended in 2023, can also be combined with the shock absorber.
Strong mobilization of energy suppliers expected
Many of these devices call on energy suppliers, who therefore have an essential active role as intermediary to play to ensure the good and rapid passing on of this aid to professional consumers in 2023.
Ministers obtained four commitments from suppliers:
- The shock absorber will be effective on invoices for consumption in January 2023, subject to the recovery of the eligibility certificate that professional consumers must complete and send to their suppliers (to be downloaded from the website of the Ministry of Energy Transition );
- Free payment terms will be granted to VSEs and SMEs most in difficulty to pay their invoices at the beginning of the year;
- Individualized support for professional consumers on understanding their bill and on the effects of support systems on their electricity bill;
- Contract revisions may be made for bakers who have concluded contracts at prohibitive prices, on a case-by-case basis and without termination fees.
The ministers also stressed to energy suppliers their duty to inform and support companies and communities so that eligible customers can effectively benefit from the systems to which they are entitled and as soon as possible. The ministers obtained from suppliers a commitment on their part to a proactive approach by suppliers as of this week, by e-mail, by post or even by telephone, with their professional customers whose bills have increased sharply or whose prices are very high, as well as , in order to help them understand their bill, and the electricity costs they will bear in 2023, and to show them all the aid that will lower this bill.
Most suppliers had already committed to a charter signed in October 2023 which includes 25 commitments to help professional consumers deal with the energy crisis. Suppliers have reiterated their attachment to this charter and their formal commitment to enforce it or to correct any shortcomings noted.
The Government is doing everything to protect our businesses and our local communities. This afternoon's meeting therefore launches the mobilization of suppliers for the year 2023. The ministers and the participants agreed to continue these exchanges throughout the implementation of the support measures in order to guarantee the best effects. .