Measures for a more stable and sustainable electricity market, with affordable prices

The European Parliament (EP) gave the green light on Thursday to the opening of negotiations with the Council to reform the EU electricity market.

The beginning of talks with the Member States, proposed by the Industry Committee in July, was supported by the plenary session with 366 votes in favour, 186 against and 18 abstentions.

MEPs want to strengthen consumer protection against electricity price volatility, and ensure they can access fixed-price or dynamic pricing contracts. Information on contracted options and the prohibition on suppliers being able to unilaterally change the terms of a contract should also be part of this reform. All consumers, as well as small businesses, should benefit from this reform of affordable and stable long-term prices and, above all, see sudden price shocks mitigated.

The EP also calls on EU countries to prohibit suppliers from cutting off the electricity supply of vulnerable customers, even in the event of disputes between them, and to prevent suppliers from requiring these types of customers to pay in advance for the service.

Energy prices have been rising since mid-2021, initially in the context of the post-COVID-19 economic recovery, but rose sharply due to gas supply problems following the start of Russia’s war against Ukraine in February 2022. The increase in gas prices had an immediate effect on electricity prices, given that the most expensive energy source (generally based on fossil fuels) determines the total price of electricity.