Government measures to face the energy crisis (1) - Council of Ministers on 4 February 2022
The Council of Ministers, on 4 February 2022, approved two draft decrees on the cost of energy.
The first royal decree releases a framework for the temporary reduction of the VAT rate for the supply of electricity from 21 to 6%. The emergency measure will be valid from 1 March 2022 for four months. However, for technical and organisational reasons, the reduction will be valid for bills invoiced from 1 April 2022.
The contracts that are interested by the measure are residential and non-professional contracts, hence exclusively contracts designed for domestic use of energy.
Furthermore, the measure is extended to the energy suppliers of the energy on which the VAT cut is applied. These agents bear the 21% VAT upstream and, if not included in the measure, would generally be in a situation of VAT tax credit, given the VAT rate cut applied on residential contracts.
Extension of the social tariff
The second royal decree concerns the extension of the social tariff for the BIM category (Beneficiaries of Increased Intervention, Béneficiaire d’Intervention Majorée) for gas and electricity suppliers. The social tariff entered into force on 1 February 2021 and was limited until the 31 December 2021, as per the royal decree approved on the 28 January 2021. The programme law of 27 December 2021 extends the temporary measure until 1 April 2022.
Federal heating premium
In addition, it was previously decided on 1 February that a EUR 100 premium will be granted for all Belgian households, as a deduction from their electricity bill. The premium will be automatically granted between 18 April and 31 July 2022.
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