Average Czech Household Pays 62% More For Energy Than Two Years Ago
Pensioners, single-parent families, low-income groups, inhabitants of small municipalities and family house owners were hit the hardest. Credit: vlada.cz.
Prague, Aug 29 (CTK) – The average Czech household paid 15% more for energy in June than a year ago, and 62% more than two years ago, according to a survey presented by Labour and Social Affairs Minister Marian Jurecka (KDU -CSL) yesterday.
Pensioners, single-parent families, low-income groups, inhabitants of small municipalities and family house owners were hit the hardest, according to the study of the research Institute of Labor and Social Affairs (RILSA).
Jurecka said the situation had been managed thanks to the capping of energy prices and the housing benefits. However, it is necessary to prepare for the coming heating season and to continue taking austerity measures, he added.
According to the Czech Statistical Office, the average household in the Czech Republic has 2.29 members, and there are 4.49 million households in the 10.5-million country.
Energy started rising steeply two years ago after the collapse of the Bohemia Energy energy supplier, affecting around 900,000 of its customers. Their monthly advance payments then increased many times. Clients of other companies that stopped supplying energy were also affected. Last year, the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the subsequent war were behind the energy price rise.
According to Jurecka, the “energy inflation” rise in energy prices affected mostly retired people, as their energy costs were 73% higher this June than two years ago. Part of the reason is that seniors often live in large apartments and are unable to move to smaller ones, Jurecka noted. Single-parent families are paying 66% more for energy than two years ago, he added.
Households have lost 5.6% of their net income over the past two years due to rising energy prices, while pensioners have 9% less after paying for energy, and the lowest-income households, single-parent households and those from smaller municipalities and house owners have about 7% less now, the RILSA study found.
“Throughout that period, we really tried to take steps to be able to help Czech society, households, the public sector and businesses. This year alone, the state budget will provide more than 120 billion in aid just to cap energy prices… Now it is necessary to focus on the heating season again, to look for ways and measures to reduce costs and take targeted measures. It is no longer possible to continue with blanket measures,” the minister said.
According to Jurecka, targeted measures include support for the insulation of houses, replacement of windows and doors or the acquisition of photovoltaics. A total of 3.7 billion crowns have so far been paid out to 33,118 applicants under the Environment Ministry’s New Green to Savings Light program. The average support within it amounted to 110,514 crowns, Environment Minister Petr Hladik (KDU-CSL) said.