Oil prices send gas, electricity bills soaring

9th August 2005, Comments 0 comments

9 August 2005, BRUSSELS — Families in Belgium have been warned to expect sharp rises in gas and electricity bills in the coming period.

9 August 2005

BRUSSELS — Families in Belgium have been warned to expect sharp rises in gas and electricity bills in the coming period.

The increased cost of electricity and gas might amount to EUR 25 per month and is blamed on the high price of oil, which has doubled in price in the past 18 months. Oil prices reached new record prices on Tuesday.

Interim gas bills are expected to rise considerably over the next 12 months. Even households which were economical users of gas and electricity in the past year can also expect costlier bills.

A spokesperson with energy firm Electrabel said the prices rises were a "preventative" measure. "We are basing ourselves on the expected increase in the gas price", newspaper 'Het Nieuwsblad' reported on Tuesday.

The price rises are being blamed on the high cost of oil, with 30 percent of the price for gas heating directly influenced by oil prices.

And because a large amount of electricity is produced with gas, electricity prices will also increase.
 
"A customer who can prove that he is expecting a significant decline in energy use can negotiate with us over the proposed interim bills," the Electrabel spokesperson said.
 
"But for those who don't want an unpleasant surprise at the half-yearly payment should pay what we suggest. Experience has taught us that our proposals are never far from the truth".

In London, the price of crude Brent oil reached a record height of USD 63 per barrel on Tuesday, while crude oil rose to USD 64.27 in the US.

[Copyright Expatica News 2005]

Subject: Belgian news

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