The Slovenia Times

Natural gas prices to go further up in May


Ljubljana - The volatile situation on the energy market continues so no price moderation is expected for the time being. Quite the opposite, Slovenian suppliers of natural gas for households and small businesses are announcing new price hikes. As of 1 May, prices are being further raised by several suppliers.

The prices will go up, among others, at Istrabenz Plin and its affiliated Plinarna Maribor, as well as at Petrol, one of the largest energy companies in the country.

Fortunately, as the current heating season is coming to an end, households will not be too affected by the latest price increases, at least not for now.

Istrabenz Plin and Plinarna Maribor, who already increased prices significantly in February, said they were increasingly dependent on the state's strategic decisions and other players on the global energy market, and could no longer guarantee natural gas supplies at the current prices.

The prices at the two companies will be increased from EUR 0.057 to EUR 0.072 per kilowatt-hour, VAT excluded, for their existing customers. The prices for new customers who signed gas supply contracts after 17 December 2021 will be even higher, and will, tax included, exceed EUR 0.12.

Consumers have the right to withdraw from the contract within one month after the new price list is introduced, without notice and without any fines, but there are fewer and fewer opportunities for them to find a new supplier.

Petrol initially announced new price hikes already for April, but later decided to postpone them to May to soften the blow to households and small businesses since the heating season will be practically over by then.

The new price will be EUR 0.042 per kilowatt-hour, VAT excluded, and EUR 0.051, VAT included. The company said the impact of the price hike would be redistributed among all of its existing and new customers to minimise it. From May until the end of the year, the new prices will mean an average increase of around EUR 5.39 per month for the average household or small business.

Energy supplier E.ON also plans to raise its prices from May only to then phase out its supply of electricity and gas to Slovenian customers in the coming months. This comes after a failed attempt to sell the company last year, which together with the situation on the market led to this decision.

Energetika Ljubljana announced the additional price increase 15 days later than the other companies. After the end of the heating season, the price of gas will be raised again, this time by 50% to EUR 0.073.

The only supplier that has committed not to change prices for its existing household customers until summer 2022 is GEN-I, indirectly state-owned energy trader. The prices for new customers have been raised though to EUR 0.0499, tax excluded, but the company has not yet decided whether or when they intend to increase the price further, they told STA.

The government decided today to extend for another three months the regulation reducing excise duties on energy products, including electricity, motor fuels, heating oil and natural gas. Recently, it had already extended the cap on heating oil prices for another month.

Government regulations capping the wholesale and retail prices of regular petrol and diesel are in place until the end of this month, and have so far not been extended.


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