Power rates seen to rise

By Riza T. Olchondra, 08 July 2015
from Philippine Daily Inquirer

Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) customers may have to pay more for electricity this month, although the power retailer hopes a drop in the distribution charge would soften the impact of the generation cost increase.

Meralco said Tuesday the generation charge for July would likely go up due to higher power-generation rates, which make up about 60 percent of the total power bill.

Meralco particularly cited higher prices at the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) for the June supply month as a reason.

The Malampaya gas restrictions during the June supply month also resulted in the use of more expensive alternative fuel, like condensate, by some power plants like First Gas, Meralco added.

Meralco estimated the generation charge would go up by 25 to 30 centavos per kilowatt-hour (kWh) this month. That would mean an increase of P50 to P60 in the July bill of the average 200-kWh customer.

Meralco said it was ready to implement a lower distribution charge this month upon receipt of the Energy Regulatory Commission’s (ERC) approval of the application it had filed.

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