PARIS, July 29 France will mobilise about 10
billion euros ($13.41 billion) for a package of tax breaks,
low-cost loans and bonuses to boost investment in renewable
energy and cut the country's oil and gas bill, Energy Minister
Segolene Royal said on Tuesday.
Royal, President Francois Hollande's fourth energy minister
in two years, is tasked with reducing the country's reliance on
nuclear energy - the highest in the world - to 50 percent of its
electricity production from 75 percent and boosting renewable
Last month, she presented the broad outline of a
much-delayed energy transition bill, which passes through
cabinet on Wednesday and is expected to become law in early
She confirmed that homeowners will be allowed to deduct 30
percent of the cost of thermal insulation from their taxable
income, up to a maximum of 16,000 euros per couple.
She declined to give the overall amount budgeted for this
measure, but said a similar tax break in 2009 cost about 2
billion euros per year.
The government will also simplify access to zero-percent
loans for renovation work, and will increase a bonus available
to drivers who buy an electric or any other clean car from 6,700
euros to 10,000 euros if they scrap a diesel-powered car at the
Owners of an electric car will also get a 30 percent rebate
on the cost of installing a charger at home, she said.
A 1.5 billion euro fund to subsidise "zero-waste" and
"energy-plus" territories - communities or buildings producing
more energy than they import from external sources - will be set
It remained unclear how much these measures will cost the
state for any given year, but Royal said the tax breaks would be
part of rebates already announced by Prime Minister Manuel Valls
earlier this year.
France's energy bill reached 66 billion euros in 2013, down
4.6 percent from a record high the previous year, due to lower
oil and coal prices, ministry data showed. That compares with a
wider trade deficit of 62.2 billion euros last year.
(1 US dollar = 0.7460 euro)
(Reporting by Michel Rose; Editing by Susan Fenton)