By Lenie Lectura – March 20, 2019
from Business Mirror
THE Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) is expecting energy sales volume in January and February to grow by more than 2 percent on the back of strong demand.
“We are seeing our January and February year-to-date sales growth to be around a little over 2 percent,” Meralco President Oscar Reyes said. He attributed the growth to the strong take-up of its industrial and commercial customers.
The utility firm has yet to provide initial energy sales for the first few days of March. However, Reyes said, “It seems it’s going to be a 2.5-percent growth sometime as of mid-March.”
Reyes said the first-quarter energy sales are likely to be lower than what Meralco reported in the same period last year, “given that 2018 was a high base year.”
Meralco reported “unusually strong” sales in the first quarter of 2018, particularly in March. It had reported that energy sales increased nearly 9 percent to 10,145 gigawatt-hours (GWh),
Back then, the utility firm’s strong sales volume was driven by increased consumption from existing customers and new customers.
At end-2018, energy sales volume of Meralco grew by 5 percent to 44,313 GWh. This included the volume distributed by Clark Electric Distribution Corp. (CEDC) of 527 GWh.
Meralco customer base at end-2018 stood at 6.6 million.
“The sustained growth of the domestic economy, and the resilience of the global economy amidst political uncertainties, have allowed Meralco to still achieve healthy energy sales growth in 2018, despite an increase in the pursuit of greater energy efficiency across all customer classes, distributed and self-generation, particularly rooftop solar, which could negatively impact sales volumes. We hope that the government’s ‘Build, Build, Build’program and private-sector investments will pick up steadily to support domestic consumption and help hurdle the uncertainties affecting our growth,” Meralco Chairman Manuel Pangilinan said.
Image Credits: Nonie Reyes