ELECTRICITY prices in Cyprus rose 21 per cent between the second half of 2011 and the second half of 2012, the highest jump within the EU 27, Eurostat figures revealed yesterday.
In the EU27, household electricity prices rose on average by 6.6 per cent, and in some member states such as Sweden, they dropped as much as 5.0 per cent.
And, although the increase in Cyprus for the period in question could be put down to the July 2011 naval base blast, which destroyed the island’s main power station, and saw the imposition of a special levy of 5.75 per cent, the Eurostat figures also show that the basic cost per 100 kWh in Cyprus has actually risen over 60 per cent since 2008.
Average household electricity prices in the second half of 2012 were lowest in Bulgaria (9.6 euro per 100 kWh), Romania (10.8) and Estonia (11.2), and highest in Denmark (29.7), Cyprus (29.1), Germany (26.8) and Italy (23). The average electricity price in the EU27 was 19.7 euro per 100 kWh. In 2008, the price in Cyprus per 100 kWh was 17.8 euro, according to the figures, which means that between then and the second half of 2011, prices had already risen some 40 per cent.
After the 21 per cent hike in Cyprus between the second half of 2011 and the second half of 2012, Greece came in next with a 15 per cent rise, Italy 11 per cent, Ireland and Portugal both 10 per cent, and Bulgaria, Spain and Poland all 9.0 per cent up. Decreases were observed in Sweden -5 per cent), Hungary -2 per cent) and Finland -1 per cent), while prices remained stable in Denmark and Malta.
Average household electricity prices in the second half of 2012 were lowest in Bulgaria at 9.6 euro per 100 kWh, Romania 10.8 euro and Estonia 11.2 euro, and highest in Denmark 29.7 euro, Cyprus 29.1 euro, Germany 26.8 euro and Italy 23 euro. The average electricity price in the EU27 was 19.7 euro per 100 kWh.
When expressed in purchasing power standards (PPS) the lowest household electricity prices were found in Finland (12.7 PPS per 100 kWh), France (13.0), Luxembourg (14.0) and Sweden (15.5), and the highest in Cyprus (32.9), Germany and Poland (both 25.9), Portugal (25.7) and Hungary (25.5).
For household consumers, the relative amount of tax contribution was lowest in the United Kingdom (4.7 per cent) where a low VAT rate is applied to the basic price and no other taxes are charged to household consumers.
The highest taxes are charged in Denmark where more than half of the final price (56 per cent) is made up of taxes and levies.
Electricity prices for households increased in 2008, remained stable or even decreased in 2009, but went up again in 2010, 2011 and in 2012.
For industrial consumers, electricity prices during the second half of 2012 were the highest in Cyprus at 22.60 euro per 100 Kwh, which is almost double that of every other EU 27 member.
“The price and reliability of energy supplies, electricity in particular, are key elements in a country’s energy supply strategy,” said Eurostat.
It said electricity prices were of particular importance for international competitiveness, as electricity usually represents a significant proportion of total energy costs for industrial and service-providing businesses.
Since the second half of 2012, the Cyprus energy regulator has scrapped a 5.75 per cent surcharge on electricity bills imposed after the Mari blast. It also reviewed in February a formula for calculating fuel costs to the EAC which has seen a 4.0 per cent bill reduction.