a new device to reduce electricity bills, which is on the table

a new device to reduce electricity bills, which is on the table



Help for businesses: a new device to reduce electricity bills, which is on the table

ENERGY COMPANY ASSISTANCE. While the energy crisis is growing, the government has announced that it is banking on a new system to cover part of the electricity bills of companies.

[Mise à jour du lundi 24 octobre 2022 à  13h25] Businesses, like individuals, are hard hit by the energy crisis. However, this should continue for several more months. To support businesses and help them get through this complicated period, the government regularly unveils new measures. latest, payment of part of the electricity bills, mentioned by Bruno Le Maire and Agnès Pannier-Runacher on October 21.

What support for electricity bills?

Meeting in Bercy on October 21, the Ministers of Economy and Energy Transition unveiled the implementation of a new system for SMEs, and possibly ETIs. To help businesses deal with the energy crisis, the government is offering to cover part of their electricity bills. This device is intended to be simpler than the existing aids: the government would pay the financial assistance directly to the energy supplier. Businesses would not have to make a request. Invited to the microphone of BFMTV on October 23, Agnès Pannier-Runacher detailed the mechanism. “The so-called Arenh part, which gives access to a bill of around 50 euros per megawatt, is already protected. Of the remaining 50%, we will cover part of the cost between a reference price and the reality of the prices that companies pay.”

According to Les Echos, this new mechanism would generate 10-25% savings on business electricity bills in 2023. Still according to the daily, which is based on the hypothesis detailed by the office of the Minister for Energy Transition, companies which have signed contracts with their supplier which provide for a price per megawatt hour (MWh) higher than 325 euros would be eligible to this help. The system, which remains to be refined, should be integrated into the 2023 finance bill.

What is the price shield?

The tariff shield currently concerns companies that have less than ten employees and generate less than two million euros in turnover. For them, as for households, the increase in electricity and gas prices is thus limited to 15%. This system complements the aid already in place for large energy-consuming companies. There won’t be no very broad tariff shield for French companies, like the one put in place to protect households, specified the Ministers of Economy and Energy Transition, meeting on October 21 in Bercy in front of the various professional federations. It would be “too dangerous”, judge Bruno Le Maire.

What “gas and electricity” assistance for large energy-consuming companies?

Companies whose energy bill exceeds 3% of their turnover are entitled to financial aid to meet their expenses. The amount is equal to:

  • 30% of energy billswithin the limit of two million euros, as soon as the company suffers a drop in its gross operating surplus (EBITDA) of at least 30% compared to the reference period in 2021 or has a negative EBITDA
  • 50% of invoices up to a limit of 25 million euros for companies that have both a negative EBITDA and losses equal to a maximum of twice the amount of the invoices, with coverage of 80% of the losses at most
  • 70% of invoices within the limit of 80 million euros for companies in the above case which also operate in a field of strong international competition, listed here.

From November 1, the amount of aid will be doubled for SMEs, and the value of 3% of turnover will no longer be based on 2021, but over the last months of 2022, said the Minister of the Economy. He also said that it would be enough for the company’s EBITDA to drop for it to be eligible for this aid. The request is made on the professional space of the company on the site of the taxes. It must be done on specific dates according to the months for which the aid is requested:

  • For the months of March to August 2022: until December 31, 2022
  • For the months of September and October 2022: from November 15, 2022 to January 31, 2023
  • For the months of November and December 2022: from January 16 to February 24, 2023.

What does the “Zero Fossil Industry” call for projects consist of?

This aid concerns companies that engage in decarbonization practices of their activity. The company must register in one of the three sections of the call for projects:

  • Low Carbon Heat by Conversion to Biomass (BCIAT)
  • Energy efficiency and decarbonization of processes (DECARB IND), with four pillars: energy efficiency, modification of the energy mix, alternative material inputs, reduction of greenhouse gases (GHGs) other than CO₂
  • Rapid deployment of decarbonization in industry (DECARB-FLASH).

For the first two parts, the submission of projects is closed, for the third, it can be done until November 23 on the Ademe site. The call for projects as a whole benefits from an overall budget of 150 million euros.

The PGE Resilience, what is it?

This loan guaranteed by the State concerns companies particularly affected by the war in Ukraine. Their cash flow must be directly or indirectly penalized by the conflict. Help can then go up to 15% of turnover. The study of the files is done on a case by case basis.

What is the Resilience subsidized rate loan?

It is direct government loans. They are aimed at companies affected by the crisis and by supply difficulties related to the war in Ukraine. These loans are aimed at VSEs, SMEs, ETIs, and in priority to industrial companies with more than 50 employees. Businesses are eligible if they have not been able to obtain financing, whether from a banking organization, a private investor, or a loan guaranteed by the State, to meet their investment or financing needs. rolling.

Requests must be addressed to the departmental committees for examining business financing problems (CODEFI). Loans at subsidized rates have a maturity (ie the due date at which they must be repaid) of six years. They can sometimes benefit from a one-year franchise, that is to say that during this period, the company is not required to reimburse anything. The current rate is 2.25%.

What is the charter with energy suppliers?

The government has had the main energy suppliers sign a charter in which they undertake to fair application of current contracts and their renewal conditions. A total of 25 commitments were made, including that of notifying companies two months before the expiry of their contract or granting them payment facilities.

In the event of a dispute, companies with less than ten employees or with less than two million euros in turnover can refer the matter to the national energy mediator. Beyond these figures, they can seize the mediator of the companies, or directly the mediator of Engie or EDF if the dispute is with one of these two suppliers.

Publication of a reference price for electricity

The Energy Regulation Commission (CRE) is soon to publish a reference electricity price for several professional consumer profiles, which is also to be published shortly. This will allow them to compare the reference price with the price offered by a supplier before committing.

Guaranteed by the State with electricity suppliers

The finance bill for 2023 provides for the State to set up a guarantee to reduce the risk of default by companies vis-à-vis their energy supplier. This will be a counter-guarantee of the bank guarantees requested when taking out energy supply contracts in order to reinsure these contracts covered by a credit insurer. The objective is to lower supplier requirements in terms of collateral and security deposits when signing contracts.

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