Italy ups financial aid as energy costs soar again

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Italy ups financial aid as energy costs soar again
Italy's rising electricity prices. Photo: analogicus / Pixabay

Italy said Friday it was stepping up efforts to ease the strain of high electricity and gas bills for homes and businesses, with a total of €5.5 billion worth of measures.


The government had already alloted €3.8 billion for households and companies for the first quarter of 2022 in the budget, but added €1.7 billion on Friday, mainly for large businesses.

The state suspended or reduced taxes and charges related to gas and electricity bills last year, spending €4.2 billion in 2021 on supporting people and firms hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic.

Italy, which has not produced nuclear energy for over three decades, is extremely dependent on imports and consumes a lot of gas.

READ ALSO: Rising energy prices: How to save money on your bills in Italy

Gas accounts for between 35 and 40 percent of the country's primary energy consumption, compared with around 15 percent in France, according to official statistics from both countries.


Natural gas prices have reached historic highs in recent months, affecting electricity prices across Europe.

The cost of energy for service sector companies in Italy is expected to reach €19.9 billion in 2022, compared to €8.9 billion in 2020, according to calculations by trade organization Confcommercio.


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