Belgians pay less for gas and electricity than neighbouring countries
Natural gas is cheaper in Belgium than in neighbouring countries, while only France has cheaper electricity. These are the findings of a study carried out by consultants PwC on behalf of the four Belgian energy regulators, CREG, VREG, Brugel and CWaPE.
For households, Belgium is the cheapest country for natural gas in 2023 at 113 euros per megawatt-hour (MWh), closely followed by France. The reduction of VAT on natural gas to 6 per cent plays an important role in this difference. Within Belgium, Flanders is slightly cheaper than Brussels and Wallonia due to lower taxes and surcharges.
Electricity bills for households and businesses connected to the low-voltage grid have fallen compared with last year. However, prices are significantly higher than in previous years. Only France, where the government has regulated electricity as a standard household product, is cheaper than Belgium.
Belgian companies' gas bills tend to align with their foreign counterparts thanks to relatively low levies, surcharges and network costs. As the energy component is a large part of the overall bill, the differences between countries are small, with companies in Belgium paying 124 euros per MWh.
Belgian companies on the medium-voltage grid generally pay less for electricity than in neighbouring countries. This is partly due to the temporary reduction of special excise duties for this target group. Belgium is the second cheapest country after Germany. On average, Belgian companies pay 247 euros per MWh.
The joint study by the four regulators is a follow-up to the price comparison studies for 2020, 2021 and 2022. The report compares January 2023 prices with January 2022 prices for businesses and February 2023 prices with February 2022 prices for households.
© AFP PHOTO / JEAN-PHILIPPE KSIAZEK