By Myrna M. Velasco – December 7, 2016, 2:45 PM
from Manila Bulletin
December is high consumption month for most Filipino consumers, but caution is in order as the rates of Manila Electric Company (Meralco) will be up by P0.1011 per kilowatt hour (kWh) in this billing period.
The final rate reflecting all billing components will be at P8.36 per kWh, according to the utility firm.
For end-users with 200 kWh usage base, the total increase in their bills will be P20. The rate hike, Meralco said, is mainly traced “to the upward movement in the generation charge.”
Nevertheless, if compared to the same month last year, this billing month’s rate will still be lower by P0.25 per kWh from P8.61 per kWh in December 2015.
The company added that transmission charge had also been up very slight by P0.0031 per kWh, on account of its ancillary service requirements. Taxes and other charges also climbed by P0.0065 per kWh.
The plummeting value of the Philippine peso versus the US dollar, Meralco noted, had driven up the generation charge by P0.0915 per kWh from the last billing month’s P3.8436 per kWh. The local currency depreciated to P49.73 versus the greenback in November from P48.405 a month before that.
“At P3.9351 per kWh, the generation charge is P0.1948 per kWh lower compared to December 2015’s P4.1299 per kWh,” the utility firm has reiterated.
Meralco said its cost of supply procurements from independent power producers (IPPs) had been up P0.2615 per kWh; while from power supply agreements (PSAs), it had been higher by P0.2214 per kWh.
“PSA billings are likewise affected by peso depreciation as around two-thirds of their costs are dollar-denominated,” Meralco stressed.
For supply sourced from the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM), it had been down P0.3734 per kWh – thus, effectively offsetting the cost hikes from contracted capacities.
The utility firm’s spot market purchases had been higher at 22.5-percent in the last supply month from the October level of 20.1-percent. (MMV)