Inflation is becoming increasingly extreme: energy costs have become a real burden for many companies. They are now being helped.
“We have had an extreme year in terms of energy policy, with a situation the likes of which we have never seen before,” says Doris Hummer, president of the Upper Austrian Chamber of Commerce. She refers to “exploding energy prices and supply fears.”
Hummer said that costs had risen many times over for virtually all companies. “For some companies, electricity and gas prices have tenfold.”
The WKOÖ boss warns against losing sight of the serious financial problems many domestic companies face. “Above all, the relief measures that have already been adopted must now be put on the road quickly,” Hummer emphasizes. Otherwise, they would lose ground in national and international competition.
In Upper Austria, a relief step is now being taken: The regional utility Energie AG has announced that existing commercial customers (up to 100,000-kilowatt hours annual consumption) will receive 50 free electricity days.
That equates to a 13.7 percent discount and helps about 34,000 businesses. In this way, even the smaller companies, which would often have to look through their fingers for subsidies, could be relieved quickly and unbureaucratically, explains the president. She also appeals to all other energy suppliers in the state to follow suit.
The cost situation also remains this year for the enterprises challenging, says Hummer. And in direction: it is now immensely important that the unprecedented implementation steps for further support take place quickly. “The guidelines must be completed as quickly as possible so that the processing of the aid can be started quickly,” she says. This will secure the liquidity of the companies.
Farmers in Upper Austria will now also be waived 50 electricity days by Energie AG. The Chamber of Agriculture and the state’s agricultural department have agreed on this with the supplier.
Above all, enterprises from the energy-intensive range of animal husbandry and direct marketers got it badly. Farm vacation providers and fruit and vegetable producers are also under severe pressure.
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