Support for companies faced with rising natural gas prices – Government

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The Ministry of Economy clarified today that the mechanisms of support for companies, given the exceptional increases in costs with natural gas, remain in force, ensuring that it will assess the need for new measures.

“The Ministry of Economy and Sea clarifies that the legal instruments and support mechanisms for companies to compensate for exceptional increases in costs related to the price of natural gas remain in force,” it said in a statement.

The newspaper Público reported today that the government will end the support programs for the cost of gas as of July.

At stake is the IAPMEI – Agency for Competitiveness and Innovation program, which has awarded companies, since last year, subsidies worth around 85 million euros.

Citing an official source from the Ministry of the Economy and the Sea, the newspaper advanced that no new notices are expected to be opened, taking into account the decrease in the price of gas, verified in recent months.

In the note released today, the ministry headed by António Costa Silva assured that the executive will continue to monitor the evolution of energy prices in order to assess the “possible need for new support to companies.

On the other hand, he highlighted the extraordinary support to companies with gas consumption over 10,000 cubic meters (m3) per year, in effect since January.

Added to this are the notices launched in the scope of the Apoiar Gás program that “covered the costs with the exceptional increase in the price of natural gas until December 2022, and therefore there is no discontinuation of support.

The Ministry of Economy also underlined that this program is framed within the temporary support framework, created by Brussels, which determines that support can only be granted when “the gas tariff corresponds to double the average reference price in 2021.

As he pointed out, current gas price quotes “are almost identical to the reference values reported by the companies in 2021” (27 euros per megawatt-hour).

Thus, the opening of new support periods produces “no practical effects,” he pointed out.

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