price freeze, supplier change, how does it work?

The 2022 rate shield has rates frozen at the closing level of 2021 until the end of December and applies to all customers, whether they have a regulated rate contract or a regulated rate indexed contract, explains the CLCV consumer association.

Who is worried?

“All households”, that is, 10 million gas subscribers, as well as condominiums, social housing, small businesses and the smallest localities, that is, most of the municipalities in the territory, are affected by the tariff shield of 2023.

The other offers of marché à prix fixes are legally eligible more seulement after the 1st September, thanks to a compensation mechanism for lequel l’Etat compensates los pertes de fournisseurs d’énergie, who continue to feed au prix fort sur les marchés wholesale.

“All providers, whether they are in a fixed price offer, or in an offer close to the regulated sales rates, can allow their clients to benefit from the tariff shield”, summarizes Emmanuelle Wargon, president of the Regulation Commission of Energy (CRE). .

Change provider? It’s possible…

Fixed-price market offers, usually one to three years, could be advantageous before the energy crisis, because they protected against the high volatility of gas prices. But in recent months, subscribers have been offered, at the end of their contracts, renewals at astronomical prices, modeled on new market prices; “Insane prices”, warned Emmanuel Macron himself, throwing out to consumers: “don’t sign them! “.

Consumers whose contracts are about to expire have the right to choose another offer from their provider, or go to a competitor. The site of the ombudsman for energy, energie-info.froffers a comparator that shows that multiple market offers are offered at reasonable prices.

“You can always change supplier, except in very special cases of de facto monopolies like in Bordeaux”, emphasizes Emmanuelle Wargon.

…Except in Bordeaux…

In the Bordeaux metropolis, some clients of the incumbent operator Gaz de Bordeaux have been given a cold shower when they discovered price increases of more than 450%.

These three-year fixed price contracts expiring in November, the operator recently offered its subscribers new prices that reflect current prices, that is, much higher. The shield has not been applied to these clients, although it has just been extended on September 1 to all providers. The letters had been sent before the government announcements on September 14 about the expansion of the shield.

Can clients go to other providers? Impossible because Gaz de Bordeaux is in a de facto monopoly situation.

Faced with this mess, the CRE asked Gaz de Bordeaux on Thursday to review its prices. “We are working with them to see how they can make an offer that better fits the tariff shield,” said Ms Wargon.

And the end of the regulated rate in 2023?

The law provides for the abolition of the regulated gas rate for households, considered anti-competitive by Brussels, on July 1, 2023.

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