January 27, 2023

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“I work for 1,800 lei.” A woman’s reaction when she received an electricity bill of 7,000 lei

Thousands of Romanians receive huge energy bills for the last two months. Bewildered, they look for explanations at the suppliers’ headquarters and claim that they were not informed that the average monthly consumption of the previous year is taken into account.

And not only domestic consumers are affected, but also industrial ones. In the face of this wave of enormous bills, according to some government sources, those in charge are planning to amend the energy ordinance in Parliament. Thus, the calculation of invoices should refer to the average of that month, but of the last three years.

Nervous woman: “Well, don’t you get nervous, sir? They walk you for two days for two words”.

The day started with nerves for many Romanians who came in the early hours to ask for explanations for the bills of thousands of lei. Most people do not know that the average monthly consumption of the last year is taken into account.

“I work for 1,800 lei and pay a bill of 7,000 lei?”

Woman: “For two months, I received 7,000 lei, so July and August 7,000 lei, 11,000 kw consumed. We don’t consume 11,000 kw maybe in a year, not even in a year. Now it’s my husband, he files a complaint, that the bill came only last night. I have nowhere to pay this amount, I work for 1,800 lei and pay a bill of 7,000 lei?”

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Woman: “Usually 400, 500, 600, like everyone else we have household appliances. We woke up in two months with 3,200”.

Mihai Șora woke up with a bill of 6,000 lei

Among those who woke up with a huge bill is the philosopher Mihai Șora. For the last two months, he has to pay 6,000 lei. The supplier’s representatives claim that the bill represents the actual consumption recorded during the period in which they could not read the meter, because they did not have access to the home.

Those who do not have money to pay the bills, can ask the supplier to spread the debt.

Ion Lungu, president of the Association of Energy Suppliers: “There is no legal provision, but the practice of suppliers has always been to discuss with the consumer at these times. This means that when a consumer would like to have a staggered payment, for various reasons, either due to payment difficulties or received two invoices at the same time. In principle they granted this facility, only in cases where it was about criminals or people who had committed several offenses they were refused.”

What should those who receive very high bills do?

If you receive an invoice with a very high value, you do not know why and you need an explanation, the first step is to send a notification to the supplier with whom you have a contract. You can find forms on the companies’ websites or call them. If you do not receive an answer or are not satisfied with the explanations, you can send a complaint to ANRE. The complaint form is on the institution’s website. Moreover, the number of complaints that have reached ANRE has increased a lot this year. There are over 27,000, of which almost 10,000 are related to electricity bills.

Energy bills are starting to affect large factories as well.

Cristina Por, textile factory: “Energy bills have increased compared to 2021 by 100% at this moment. We pay 30,000 lei per month for energy consumption of 25 MW. Last year I was paying 15,000. The only way to reduce energy is to reduce production, or if we reduce production it means blocking the business”.

And the Azomureș fertilizer plant is forced to restrict its activity again.

Ovidiu Maior, Azomureș spokesperson: “We have reached a year in this situation where we have a direct impact on our employees, more than 200 employees are in the possibility of being seconded to other companies or in technical unemployment. Also, employees of contracting firms, those who provide maintenance services on the platform are potentially affected by these decisions.”

And a wood processing plant with more than 800 employees announced that it is suspending its activity for a limited period, due to energy costs.

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