Electricity and gas: invoice 5 October 2022 • 6 minutes
Understanding your gas or electricity bill isn’t necessarily easy. The rate you pay is divided into several parts. How this works isn’t always clear to the uninitiated. And yet it is easier than you think when you take a closer look.
There are three main parts to your bill:
The price of gas and/or electricity is determined by your energy supplier and differs from one provider to another. The distribution and transmission costs, and taxes and surcharges, vary according to the area you live in. In addition, they are respectively determined by the distribution network operator (DNO) and transmission system operator (TSO), and the government.
The “energy price” part (gas or electricity) is calculated on the basis of your consumption. Depending on the price per kilowatt-hour (kWh) set by your supplier, you will therefore pay an amount that is determined by the quantity of energy you consume.
This price per kilowatt-hour is defined by your type of meter:
In addition, you will also have to pay:
This is a specific feature of the Belgian energy market.
Note that in April 2022, the “energy” component of your energy bill represented 64 % for electricity and 83 % for gas in Brussels. Usually, these are closer to a third of the electricity bill and half of the gas bill, however, since the VAT has temporarily been lowered to 6 % until 31 March 2023, the “energy” component takes up a relatively bigger share of the bill.
Energy transport and distribution prices are respectively determined by your distribution system operator (DSO) and your transport system operator (TSO) . They allow them to support the costs of the infrastructure which transports gas and/or electricity from the high, medium and low voltage (electricity) network and the high, medium and low pressure (gas) network to your home.
In April 2022, the network costs amounted to 16 % of the bill for electricity and 8 % for gas in Brussels. Before the VAT was lowered, the figures were 27 % of the energy bill for electricity and 19 % for gas.
Find out what the electricity and natural gas distribution costs are according to your DNO on Sibelga’s website. Sibelga is the body that controls and approves these rates in Brussels.
The surcharges and taxes (federal and regional) are set by the public authorities and billed by the suppliers who pay these amounts in full to the entities concerned (government and Regions).
Energy levy and federal levy (except nuclear power phase-out and greenhouse gas reduction);
The fee for connection to the gas network (only in Wallonia).
Did you know? A VAT rate of 6% applies until 31 March 2023 to gas and electricity, except for the federal levy and the connection fee (in addition to the protected customer surcharge as regards gas).
In Brussels, fees and VAT made up 21 % of the electricity bill and 11 % of the gas bill in April 2022.
Find out the applicable taxes and fees for gas and electricity in Brussels on Sibelga’s website.
As you can see, the energy part represents between around two-thirds and four fifths of your bill. It is quite significant, and it is actually the only part over which you have complete control. As far as taxes and network costs are concerned, you have very little influence.
What does this mean for you in practical terms? That it is in your best interest to lower the energy part of your bill as much as possible. You can reduce your electricity or gas consumption by tracking down energy losses. Also think about replacing your old energy-consuming domestic appliances.
Finally, another effective solution is to compare your electricity and gas rates. If it has been more than a year since you switched energy contracts, we advise you to make another comparison. This way you can check that you always benefit from the best prices. If this isn’t the case, don’t hesitate to change your contract in order to make valuable savings! If you aren’t sure how best to proceed, you can call us free of charge on (0800 37 369) so that one of our energy advisors can assist you.