EU calls for relief funds to help energy price hit consumers

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BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union is urging member countries to provide relief funds to consumers and small businesses hit hardest by rising gas and electricity prices. The suggestion comes amid criticism that the bloc’s climate change fighting policies are fueling the problem. Energy Commissioner Kadri Simson said Wednesday that “providing targeted support to consumers, direct payments to those most at risk of energy poverty, cutting energy taxes, shifting charges to general taxation, are all measures that can be taken very swiftly under EU rules.” Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban took aim at the commission’s “Green Deal” policies for fighting climate change. He said they amount to an “indirect taxation” on home and car owners.

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