Ecuador’s Energy Ministry has reversed course and decided to maintain the electricity subsidy for owners of induction cooking ranges. A year ago, the ministry said it would discontinue the subsidy which was instituted by the government of former president Rafael Correa.
“Despite serious doubts about its effectiveness, we have decided to maintain the program in 2020,” said energy minister José Agusto. “We will conduct a thorough review beginning in January and decide on the program’s future after that.”
The subsidy for induction users provides free electricity up to 80 kilowatt hours per month with another 20 free kilowatt hours provided to owners of electric hot water heaters.
Agusto noted that the sale of induction cooking ranges amounted to less than five percent of those for gas stoves in 2019. When the subsidy program was announced in 2014, it included a 100 percent tax on gas stoves but the tax was eliminated after President Lenin Moreno took office in 2017.