The Malta Independent 26 June 2022, Sunday

Government refuses to reveal amount spent on energy subsidies

Semira Abbas Shalan Thursday, 28 April 2022, 15:14 Last update: about 3 months ago

Minister for Energy Miriam Dalli did not disclose the amount spent by government on energy subsidies to date, despite saying that the government remains fully committed to abating rising energy costs.

Answering journalists’ questions during a press conference regarding the government wage supplement scheme, Dalli said that the government is keeping up with the allocated €200 million in last year’s Budget, to curb the increase of high energy prices.

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She said that the world is facing certain uncertainties to energy prices, which Malta has managed to avoid as a percentage of the country’s energy supply has a fixed price.

The country has managed to avoid the impact of rising energy costs due to a fixed-price agreement Enemalta has with Electrogas for Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG). The five-year agreement expired in April, however, and the price of gas now is pegged to the Brent oil index.

Dalli insisted that the government decided consciously to keep prices low. Government is still subsiding costs by funding Enemalta.

“The government is doing this so consumers do not suffer from price increases,” she said.

Answering journalists’ questions on the sustainability of the decision, Dalli said that the government does not want to give another shock to families and businesses upon emerging from the effects of a pandemic. She said the government does not plan on increasing energy prices, abiding by policies.

Dalli said that credit rating agency S&P had given a positive outlook on Enemalta upon a question about the viability of pumping money into Enemalta monthly. This outlook is, however, dependent on the government’s continued support for Enemalta.

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