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energy costs

Ryan says windfall tax will help with electricity bills, but fails to commit to more energy credits

It is intended that the legislation would be enacted before the summer recess and first proceeds are expected to be collected in September.

LAST UPDATE | 21 Mar 2023

GOVERNMENT HAS SIGNED off on the windfall tax legislation which will implement the temporary solidarity contribution from energy companies and the cap on market revenues. 

The windfall gains measures will consist of two parts:

  • A contribution based on this year and last year’s taxable profits in the fossil fuel production and refining sectors.
  • A cap on the market revenues of some generators (such as wind, solar and oil) in the electricity sector which will apply until this June.

It is estimated that the two will result in proceeds of between €280 and €600 million being collected.

The money generated will be “ring fenced” and “recycled” to help households, according to Energy Minister Eamon Ryan. 

When asked if there might be another round of energy credits, Ryan said the Government would review it. “We will wait until the budget process,” he added. 

“It’ll be recycled as part of helping households in their electricity bills and also on the solidarity contribution, giving us the flexibility in how we develop the energy transition we’re engaged in funding to help businesses make that change,” he said. 

It is intended that the legislation will be enacted before the summer recess and first proceeds are expected to be collected in September.

High wholesale gas prices have also led to windfall gains for some entities in the fossil fuel production and refining sectors, and in the electricity sector.

Speaking to reporters today, Ryan said the additional revenues will be used to support electricity customers in mitigating the impact of high electricity prices. 

“It will be a matter for Government to decide how to allocate proceeds collected,” said Ryan, who when pushed for specifics on how the money might be put back into people’s pockets, the minister was reluctant to speculate. 

“I think we have to wait to see,” he said, stating that the range of what is expected – between €280 and €600 million – is a wide range. 

For example, Ryan each one of the energy credits used to help people with their bills costs like €400 million.

“We will be better able to judge when we know the exact revenue and know what other measures we might want to introduce,” he said. 

With reporting by Christina Finn

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