Electricity, heating and fuels, technology, transport and travel, but also clothing, food & Co: Almost all areas of life are affected by the already noticeable price increases. The most important inflation driver is the dramatic rise in energy costs worldwide: According to the Austrian Energy Agency, the energy price index (EPI) for Austrian households in September was 16.3 percent above the previous year’s level, with inflation reaching 3.2 percent. Costs for the construction and maintenance of the energy infrastructure.
“The rising energy costs act as a driver of inflation – they are slowing the upswing and bring massive disadvantages for domestic industry in global competition, ”confirms Georg Knill, President of the Federation of Industry.
Reasons for this development are, in addition to the increased demand after the last lockdowns, international market prices, lower OPEC oil production volumes and rising costs for the construction and maintenance of the energy infrastructure.
The planned introduction of a CO2 tax on fossil fuels in Austria in 2022 will exacerbate the energy price situation even further: 30 euros will be due per ton of carbon dioxide emitted. Austria follows countries like Germany, France, Switzerland as well as Sweden and Finland, which already levy such taxes. But this will increase the price pressure in the production of goods, as well as in heating and fuel costs – and this in turn will be reflected in increased delivery costs and goods prices overall.
The gas from the recently completed Nord Stream 2 Baltic Sea gas pipeline could become a game changer, but permits and certificates from the German Federal Network Agency are still missing.
Austria’s Industry has grown above the EU average for twenty years and is recovering thanks to a strong industry despite the turbulence caused by the pandemic. “In order to be able to maintain energy-intensive production in Europe and Austria, there must be large amounts of energy at competitive prices,” agreed industry representatives at the UN Climate Change Conference 2021 “COP26” in Glasgow.