The last days of runaway electricity prices have forced the Government to consider measures, even if they are temporary, that until recently were not on the table. One of them is the reduction of taxes that consumers pay for electricity, such as VAT or electricity generation.
Eurostat data show that Spain is one of the countries that bears the highest indirect tax on electricity bills within the European Union, currently set at 21%. Well, in an analysis carried out by the Finance Technicians Union (Gestha) For this medium, experts calculate that if the Government lowered the VAT at the reduced rate it could mean a reduction of about 1,700 million for households in annual calculation.
But be careful, the author of the report considers that this decrease does not guarantee that the lower VAT will be compensated with new increases in the price of Kw. That is, they do not consider it effective to lower taxes and opt for other types of measures to make the receipt cheaper. Among others, that the energy auctions be carried out according to the cost of production of each bidder, instead of the last price. It should be remembered that in daily auctions, the problem is that the cheapest production, such as hydroelectric or nuclear, enters the auction first (pool) and, if demand is not covered, another more expensive type of energy (such as gas and CO2 emission rights) comes in to fill that gap, thus raising the price.
Similarly, the Ministry of Finance technicians recommend that the National Market and Competition Commission (CNMC) carry out an exhaustive examination of the market, in addition to considering the possibility of ban electricity futures trading, as ESMA (the European markets regulator) and the Spanish National Securities Market Commission (CNMV) did with certain operations that affected the shares of strategic companies during the previous debt crisis in the region.
Gestha experts also advocate “promoting small renewable energy, mainly for the self-consumption of companies, individuals and small population centers «.
Not very effective
In addition, they do not consider it effective to lower the costs because, according to what they indicate, the tax collection on energy in Spain, excluding taxes on transport fuel, still presents a differential of 0.26 percentage points of GDP with respect to the European average. In addition, they recall that “Spain occupies the 25th position in environmental taxes, only ahead of Ireland and Luxembourg.”
According to the data collected by the technicians for this medium, on the tax collection on Energy, excluding taxes on transport fuel, Spain occupies position 20 ahead of Malta, Austria, Portugal, Hungary, Ireland, Luxembourg and Lithuania. Regarding the European average, Spain has a tax deficit in this component of about 3,200 million.
And they recall: «Despite the debate on the effects of taxes, only eight countries have reduced rates for electricity consumption and, of these, only Malta requires the consumption of electricity at the super reduced rate«. Ireland does this for energy and heating fuel, coal, peat, wood, electricity, gas (for heating and lighting, excluding LPG for cars) and heating oil. France for the underwriting part of the invoice. On Corsica for 10% sales of electricity supplied at low voltage, while Croatia for the delivery of electricity to another supplier or end user, including fees related to delivery.
«With kw / h prices similar to Spain, only Italy and Ireland they have the reduced rate of VAT “, they indicate. On the other hand, and according to their analysis, the general rate is still required in Germany, Belgium and Denmark with prices higher than in Spain.