Home Electric Rates Soar in Greece

FILE - People queue to pay their electricity bills at a Public Power Company office in central Athens. . (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)

ATHENS – Greece’s Public Power Corporation (PPC) will raise electric rates for households by 11.1 percent on July 25 but give a break to small-and-medium-sized businesses.

The rates adjustments were demanded by the country’s international lenders and affect more than 2.2 million households, who will bear the brunt of higher costs while some 1.4 million smaller businesses will see an easing of their bills.

The process for that adjustment started in 2011 so that it would apply from June 2013, but the government negotiated a one-year delay to its application with its creditors who feared Greeks with second holiday homes were paying too little.

To offset the increase, the PPC is now asking households to apply for the 49 percent discount offered by the so-called social rates if they qualify for them, although they have to prove eligibility.

Public Power Corporation (PPC) on Monday announced electricity rate increases up to 11 pct for household customers with electricity consumption of up to 800 kW over a four-month period and rate declines of up to 3.4 pct for small- and medium-sized enterprises, starting from July 25.

The PPC said these changes will have no impact on its results and underlined that energy cost in Greece remained one of the lowest in the European Union, although to keep its income level households will be subsidizing businesses.