The Australian Government, together with regional executives, agreed on Friday to limit gas prices and charcoal on a temporary basis to alleviate inflation fueled by the global energy crisis.
In a press conference, Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said that the decision involves limiting the price of gas to 12 Australian dollars (8.14 dollars or 7.69 euros) per gigajoule, while coal will be capped at 125 dollars (about 84.76 dollars or 80.14 euros) per ton.
Albanese said parliament will meet next week to approve the gas price cap, while the coal cap will be implemented by states.
The authorities also agreed to an aid fund of 1,500 million Australian dollars (about 1,017 million dollars or 961.89 million euros) for companies and families in the country affected by the energy crisis.
“Australia’s energy market is under more pressure than ever. Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine is pushing prices to historic levels around the world,” the Labour prime minister said on Twitter (NYSE:TWTR).
Albanese said the situation has also worsened due to the inaction of the previous conservative coalition, referring to the lack of investment in infrastructure and renewable energy.
“Extraordinary times require extraordinary measures,” added the Australian president, who also announced more investment for cleaner, cheaper and safer energy.
Australia is one of the leading producers of coal in the world and most of it is exported.
The Australian measure to limit the cost of gas is in line with the negotiations that are taking place in the European Union to put a cap on the price of this energy source.
At the moment, Brussels has proposed setting a gas cap at 275 euros per megawatt-hour (MWh), a limit that is still considered too high by countries such as Spain.
One megawatt-hour equals 3.6 gigajoules.