Much is still known about the energy ceilings of companies: “Clarity needed quickly”

NOS

News from the NOSyesterday, 22:43

Bakers, butchers and other energy-intensive SMEs will also be compensated for their high energy costs. But what about the plans that came out today for the energy ceiling? families they were very detailed, this was not the case for SMEs and this creates uncertainty.

“What we asked for is the greatest possible clarity,” says Jacco Vonhof, president of MKB-Nederland. “So it indicates in a very concrete way: which companies we are talking about, what percentage of energy consumption. And what the remuneration is”. This is not yet known.

Economy Minister Adriaansens understands that entrepreneurs want to know where they are. “But it’s complicated to finalize the deal and make sure he does what he has to do. But he’ll get there, that’s the good news.”

Accurate processing is crucial, according to Vonhof, because entrepreneurs do not know if and for what part of their energy costs they will be compensated. If they continue to produce despite their loss, “it may be that when the rule is completed, you will find that you have made the wrong choice, because your debts are high but the deal is not compensating enough. Then it is too late and you have to pay back. that money “.

‘Too late’

Aside from the lack of clarity, there are more objections. The Dutch Bakery Association is happy that there will be a regulation, but believes it should go into effect sooner. “If aid does not arrive until April 1 next year, it will be too late for many bakers. Some are facing a tenfold increase in energy prices,” a spokesperson said.

That’s why even the industry association finds it odd that the scheme goes into effect retroactively on November 1, 2022. “Energy prices are already high and have been high for months, so why don’t we get compensated for it?”

The government has already been trying to take measures since November for entrepreneurs who do not run the risk of surviving the winter, but nothing is yet clear about this.

‘Big companies in the cold’

It is already known that the SME regime will be temporary. “The question is how much consolation it offers, because energy prices are expected to remain high for years to come,” says Sekhar Lahiri, director of Metaal Nederland.

Furthermore, the allowance applies only to SMEs. “We also have big companies among our supporters and the government is now letting them out in the cold. That is while other countries have issued substantial support packages, even for those companies.” Metal Netherlands fears an uneven playing field.

Previously there were objections against an SME regime. For example, it is difficult to determine average energy consumption and there may be unauthorized state aid. That’s why the people involved called it “super complex”. Minister Adriaansens also warned that the government cannot offer unbridled support as it could upset the economy in the long term.

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