||Asean Affairs 8 July 2013
July electric bills to go down by P0.30 per kWh
By DANESSA O. RIVERA, GMA News
Despite a regulatory approval on Manila Electric Co.'s distribution rate hike starting July, customers will actually see their bills go down by P0.30 per kilowatt-hour (kWh) this month on lower generation charges, an official of the utility firm said Friday.
"The overall decrease for this month has offset the approved rate hike of Meralco," spokesperson Joe Zaldarriaga told GMA News Online.
"This will be in effect starting July 1, 2013 until June 30, 2014. The MAP (maximum average price) is quite small compared to the decrease in overall rates for July," Zaldarriaga said.
In a e-mailed statement Friday, the power utility firm said a household using 200 kWh will pay P60 less in July.
The generation charge or cost of electricity sold by power producers went down by P0.33 per kWh to P5.33 per kWh from P5.66 per kWh.
Meralco said the decline was largely due to the P0.14 per kWh reduction in the rates of the new Power Supply Agreements and P6.04 per kWh reduction in the rates of the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM).
These reductions would offset the rate hikes of the Independent Power Producers by P0.27 per kWh and of the National Power Corporation by P1.66 per kWh.
In a June 10 order, the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) provisionally approved Meralco’s application for the MAP for Regulatory Year (RY) 2014 to P1.6474 per kWh, an increase of P1.71 per kWh from the P1.6303 per kWh level provisionally approved for RY 2013.
During rainy season, the power utility buys less from WESM as supply starts to normalize with the corresponding slow down in demand.
The transmission charge did not register any movement, according to Meralco, while the value-added tax and local franchise tax increased by P0.02 per kWh.
Other bill components—which include subsidy, universal charges, system loss charge, reductions under the Electric Power Industry Reform Act, and previous month’s adjustment on generation cost—would have a combined reduction of P0.04 per kWh.
Meralco said the approved MAP for RY 2014 was translated into specific rates across Meralco’s different customer segments.
Under the Performance-Based Regulation (PBR), the ERC reviews and verifies the rates of all private distribution utilities each year, considering such factors as their performance against technical and customer service standards.
In a briefing on its 2012 results, Meralco reported that it surpassed all regulatory performance standards which include the frequency and duration of interruptions, voltage regulation, system loss, time to process applications, time to connect customers, and call center performance.
The PBR is an internationally accepted rate-setting methodology the ERC uses to set the transmission and distribution rates.