LJUBLJANA, Jan. 24 (Xinhua) -- The Slovenian government on Tuesday capped the price of district heating, in order to ease the burden of the energy crisis on the population.
The maximum price for the variable part of the price of district heating for households was set to 98.7 euros (107.36 U.S. dollars) per megawatt hour (MWh) from the start of January until the end of April, the government said.
The fixed part of the heating price, which is an administrative charge and does not depend upon the price of energy, will not change.
Slovenia has 59 public district heating networks, where numerous households are being heated from a centralized location. Currently, the price for the variable part of district heating ranges between 45 and 160 euros per MWh, the government said.
The price cap will reduce the cost of heating in 18 public networks whose prices have so far been above the cap, it added.
"The biggest decrease of the retail price for heating will take place mostly in ... networks which use natural gas as an energy source," the government said.
The heating season in Slovenia usually lasts from October until April, with January and February often being the coldest months of the year.
Last week, citizens of Trbovlje in eastern Slovenia held a public protest, claiming that the price of district heating has increased so much that many households will not be able to pay their bills. Trbovlje is among the cities where the price cap will significantly reduce the cost of heating.
The government also hopes the price cap will reduce inflation, which reached 10.3 percent year-on-year in December, up from 5.1 percent a year before. (1 euro = 1.09 U.S. dollars) ■