Last Updated on Tuesday, 6 September, 2022 at 10:16 am by Andre Camilleri
Speaking during an exhange of views with the European Commission at the European Parliament’s Committee on Industry, Research and Energy, MEP Josianne Cutajar stated that Europe must do more to protect its most vulnerable citizens from rising energy prices. Energy prices are peaking to new records and, notwithstanding the EU gas reduction plan, many enterprises, big and small alike, are facing a rapidly deteriorating economic outlook with negative consequences on consumers, Cutajar observed.
“It is important to note that this scenario affects jobs in key economic sectors and risks a domino effect with skyrocketing prices for basic goods. Thus, the Commission must counter this possible domino effect with concrete actions to protect the purchasing power of EU citizens”, stated the MEP.
While in Malta measures taken by the Labour Government are making up for the higher costs in the energy field, this does not mean that we are not affected by, for example, higher prices of imported products, including basic commodities. This is because higher electricity prices lead to higher production costs, which may result in higher prices being paid by the end consumer.
Josianne Cutajar additionally noted that energy prices had already started rising before the war in Ukraine but the effects thereof continued to exacerbate the already rising energy prices. That said, Europe must learn from its mistake of being over-dependent on Russia or any other third country for its energy needs.
“Accordingly, Europe must continue to diversify its energy sources by also looking toward cleaner energy and renewables, whilst ensuring energy affordability and security of supply, especially for the sake of vulnerable citizens”, Josianne Cutajar concluded.