The EU Commission is allowing state emergency measures to combat high energy costs until summer 2024. This means that EU countries can reimburse companies for part of the additional costs for longer than originally planned energy lose weight. The prerequisite is that prices are significantly higher than before the war against Ukraine. The Commission had relaxed the state aid rules in March 2022 to cushion the consequences of the Russian attack and extended the exemptions this spring until the end of 2023.
Berlin, among others, also campaigned for the renewed extension of this so-called “temporary crisis framework”. According to a diplomat, Germany can theoretically maintain measures such as the cap on gas and electricity prices. Corresponding EU regulations are now to be extended until June 30th. In Berlin government circles it is considered unlikely that the electricity price brake will have to be activated again. But you would like to keep this option in the event of new price jumps.
Habeck doubts whether there is still enough money for energy subsidies
Economics Minister Robert Habeck (Greens) recently expressed doubts as to whether according to the recent ruling of the Federal Constitutional Court there would still be money available for these emergency measures. In his opinion, the ruling also endangers the economic stabilization fund from which the energy price caps are paid. “In the justification, the judgment, because it is so fundamentally spoken, actually refers to all funds that were set up and that are over the year,” said Habeck in the Deutschlandfunk.
A few days ago, the Federal Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe banned Corona loans from being subsequently reallocated to climate protection and the modernization of industry. There is therefore a lack of 60 billion euros in the so-called climate and transformation fund, a special fund that is economically separate from the core budget. For the time being, it remains unclear how the traffic light coalition will plug this financial hole.
Along with the exceptions for energy subsidies, the EU Commission is also extending measures to cushion the consequences of sanctions and other effects of war for companies. Affected companies may be supported with amounts of up to 280,000 euros in agriculture, up to 335,000 euros for fishermen and aquaculture businesses and up to 2.25 million euros in other sectors.