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 16 Jan 2009

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Malaysia: Power tariff cut planned for mid Feb

Malaysia is expected to lower electricity tariffs by mid February, The Star newspaper reported on Friday quoting an unidentified source.

The paper said the rate cut would follow an expected reduction in the price of gas supplied by national oil firm Petronas to the power sector, with the government likely to propose a new gas price "in a matter of days".

"Manufacturers are facing problems paying their electricity bills," the source was quoted as saying. "Also, the measure is needed to stimulate the economy and it needs to take effect as soon as possible."

The energy ministry was not immediately available for comment.

"(If the) gas price comes down, then it's okay for tariffs to come down as well," the newspaper quoted Che Khalib Mohamed Noh, chief executive of power distributor Tenaga Nasional as saying.

"But, how much lower can the gas price go?"

Energy Minister Shaziman Abu Mansor was quoted on Thursday as saying that the government would bring forward a review of gas prices, which was initially planned for June, in line with a drop in oil prices.

















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