Gas bill to increase by 12 percent in July, French energy body says

France © AFP - Charly Triballeau
© AFP - Charly Triballeau

The average price of gas bills for millions of French consumers will rise by 11.7 percent in July compared with June, as a result of a rebound in prices and, above all, an increase in distribution network tariffs.

The gas bills of millions of French people will rise by an average of 11.7 percent in July compared with June, mainly as a result of higher distribution costs, the French energy regulator CRE announced on Monday.

The distribution network operator GRDF bills suppliers, who, if the prices rise, can pass on the cost to consumers.

In July, the average reference price will be €129.2 per megawatt-hour (MWh), including VAT, compared with 115.7 euros per MWh in June, according to the monthly reference index published by CRE.

However, the regulator argues that even if this price has increased, it remains 4.7 euros per MWh below the average price on 1 January 2024, a fall of 3.5 percent.

Average annual bill of €1,184

CRE has provided an estimate of the annual bill for private customers with a variable-price gas offer. This would average €1,184, compared with €1,060 per year in June and €1,227 in January.

The reference price is published "as an indication" because suppliers remain "free to set the price conditions for their offers" and to pass on the increase or not on the bill, says the CRE.

The increase should in the end affect the vast majority of the 10 million or so residential customers connected to the GRDF gas distribution network, according to the national energy ombudsman. 

This increase comes on top of the doubling since 1 January of a tax paid by gas suppliers.

(with AFP)