Representing Europe’s hotels, restaurants, pubs and cafes, HOTREC is urging EU lawmakers to take action and reduce energy prices so that hospitality services providers are able to operate their businesses.
HOTREC warned energy ministers that hospitality businesses face bankruptcy if immediate action is not taken. The announcement comes days after the European Commission proposed emergency electricity demand reduction measures to help lower the cost of power for consumers as well as measures to redistribute the energy sector’s surplus revenues to final customers.
The association notes that the hospitality sector represents 2 million companies – 90 percent of which are micro-enterprises – which employ 12 million people.
“Despite this track record, the sector has lately been facing numerous challenges, namely high food prices, labor shortages, high inflation levels, while still being in recovery after Covid-19. Companies in the sector report an increase in energy consumption prices of between 200 to 600 percent,” HOTREC said, adding that bankruptcies are imminent if something isn’t done.
Although “we continue to urge businesses to be energy efficient; save energy as much as possible and follow the transition to renewables… Our sector heavily depends on energy (heating and cooling) to provide guests with the service they expect,” it adds.
HOTREC calls on the Council to exclude 2020 and 2021 as reference periods in the case of the hospitality sector as most companies were closed for long periods of time. The reference period, they say, should instead cover the three highest consuming years over the last five-year period.
The association is also requesting that member states activate the State Aid Temporary Crisis Framework.