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Ireland: Household electricity bills that have been overcharged will be reimbursed

DUBLIN – The energy regulator has announced that it will refund up to €50 per bill for the ESB’s overcharge on household bills in order to subsidise large businesses’ electricity bills.

According to the energy regulator, the ESB is now refunding overcharges on householders’ electricity bills, known as the “rebalancing subsidy,” which was introduced by the government in 2010 to reduce big businesses’ electricity bills during the financial crisis. The shortfall in big business network charges was compensated for by increasing the household bill by about 25%.

Pharmaceutical companies, food manufacturers, and information technology firms all benefited from this special scheme back then.

It came under review only last year, at the height of the energy price crisis, when the decision was taken to scrap it. According to media reports, up to €50 million has been added to household customers’ bills. Mac Evilly, chairperson of the Commission for Regulation of Utilities (CRU), stated that the actual payments needed to be determined.

The subsidy, which was created as an emergency measure, will last for 12 years and will support large businesses to the tune of €600 million, as per media reports last October.

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