Bulgarian Parliament approves amended moratorium on utilities prices

Bulgarian MPs approved on December 16 a motion to freeze electricity, central heating and sewerage prices at their current levels until March 31 2022.

The motion was an amended version of the moratorium that Parliament voted a day earlier, tabled by the largest opposition group GERB-UDF, which envisioned setting utilities prices at the levels they were on January 1 2021 and had no end date for the price freeze.

That motion drew a sharp rebuke from the Prime Minister’s office and prompted a revision of the motion’s wording, agreed by the parliamentary ad hoc committee to discuss possible measures to counter the rise in electricity prices for household and industrial consumers.

The amended version passed on December 16 with 132 votes in favour, four against and two MPs abstaining.

The vote was preceded by a lengthy debate on the parliamentary floor, with heated exchanges between MPs from the four groups in the government coalition and the opposition.

Several proposals, including dismissing the moratorium altogether and reducing value-added tax to compensate for the increased electricity prices, were rejected by MPs.

(Photo: greenhitma/sxc.hu)

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