Power firms seek tariff hike for July

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ISLAMABAD: The ex-Wapda Distribution companies (Discos) have sought about Rs1.93 per unit increase in consumer tariff on account of monthly fuel price adjustment due to higher than estimated power generation cost.

The National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) will take up for public hearing on September 4 a petition for increase in consumer tariff for ex-Wapda distribution companies (Discos) on account of fuel cost adjustment of electricity consumed in July. The higher electricity rates, on approval by the regulator, would be recovered from consumers in the upcoming billing month.

The Central Power Purchasing Agency (CPPA) on behalf of Discos claimed an additional cost of Rs1.93 per unit under base tariff 2015-16.

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The CPPA in its petition said it had charged consumers a reference tariff of Rs3.54 per unit in July while the actual fuel cost turned out to be Rs5.46 per unit and hence it should be allowed to recover Rs1.93 per unit additional cost from consumers next month.

Total energy generation from all sources in July was recorded at 14,231 GWh costing Rs74.90bn, having an average per unit fuel cost of Rs5.26. About 13,788 GWh were sold to Discos for Rs75.41bn.

The hydropower generation contributed the highest share of about 32.53pc to the overall production in July. This was followed by about 25pc from RLNG-based power generation while coal-based plants achieved third position with 14.33pc share.

Locally produced gas-based electricity production stood at 12pc while the nuclear power generation ­contributed 5.81pc, followed by 5.5pc by furnace ­oil-based plants. The share of wind power plants stood at 4.2pc.

There was no fuel cost on hydroelectricity while coal based fuel cost stood at Rs5.6 per unit. The furnace oil based plants generated electricity at a cost of Rs14.9 per unit.

Nuclear energy fuel cost stood at Rs1.022 paisa per unit while power produced by sugar mills accounted for less than 1pc share at a fuel cost of Rs6.2 per unit. The electricity imported from Iran had a cost of Rs11.57 per unit and its total share in generation was 0.38pc.

Wind produced 2.01pc electricity at zero fuel cost while 0.42pc contribution came from solar energy again at no cost.

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The higher tariff adjustment will not be charged to lifeline consumers using up to 50 units per month but all other consumer of all categories including industrial sector and agriculture tube wells would have to bear the additional burden.

The revised rates would also not apply to K-Electric ­consumers.

Published in Dawn, September 3rd, 2019

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