VATT discovered the difference when comparing location-specific electricity consumption data obtained from Fingrid’s Datahub and background data from Statistics Finland’s households. Iivo VehviläinenA senior researcher at Aalto University stated to the public broadcasting company that the data supports the assumption that high-income households consume more electricity than low-income ones.
However, the differences are surprisingly large.
“The government-agreed support for controlling household electricity bills is greater the more electricity is used. Based on the data, most of the support is aimed at high-income households and at the same time the rich are even encouraged to use more electricity than they currently do,” he commented.
“On the other hand, the aid is not necessarily enough for low-income households in particular [electricity] consumption increases towards winter.”
The Finnish government has reduced the VAT on electricity from 24 percent to 10 percent for the period 1 December to 30 April. It has also introduced a tax credit corresponding to 60 percent of electricity costs that exceed EUR 2,000 and a maximum of EUR 6,000 between January 1 and April 30. Households that cannot take advantage of the tax credit can apply for support that covers 60 percent of electricity costs of more than 400 euros but no more than 1,500 euros.
Minister of Economy Mika Lintilä (The Center) is currently preparing another proposal to cut household electricity bills. Leaders of the five ruling parties will weigh options later today.
Among the alternatives is an electricity price ceiling, an idea raised by the Social Democrats on Wednesday.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Source: The Nordic Page