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Consumers brace for higher electricity bills

/ 08:58 PM April 02, 2012

Households consuming 200 kilowatts of electricity a month may expect an P8 increase in their bills after the National Power Corp. (Napocor) was allowed to raise its generation rates nationwide, according to a power company official.

Arturo Milan, executive vice president of Davao Light and Power Co. (DLPC), said Napocor’s higher generation costs would translate to an P8 increase in power rates per 200 kW, the average consumption of residential consumers in the city. DLPC has about 260,000 clients.

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Last week, the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) approved the increase of 4.42 centavos per kilowatt-hour in generation charges being sought by Napocor in Mindanao. It also allowed increase in generation charges by 69.04 centavos per kWh in Luzon and by 60.60 centavos in the Visayas.

Currently, Napocor’s effective rate is P5.0160 per kWh in Luzon, P4.0740 in the Visayas, and P2.9321 in Mindanao.

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Milan said DLPC would implement the increase once it receives the official order from the ERC.

In a press statement, the ERC said the rate increases covered the applications filed by Napocor and Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corp. (PSALM) under the generation-rate-adjustment mechanism (GRAM), which allows utilities to recover costs associated with fuel and purchased power, and incremental currency exchange-rate adjustment (Icera) mechanism.

The GRAM and Icera rate adjustments will be effective in the March 26 to April 25 billing period and valid until the deferred accounting adjustment amounts approved by the ERC shall have been fully recovered.

In its website, DLPC claims to be the third-largest privately owned electric utility in the country. It holds the franchise for distributing electric power to Davao City, as well as Panabo City and the towns of Carmen, Dujali and Sto. Tomas in Davao del Norte.

In 2011, the company sold 1.583 billion kWh to 294,159 customers with a peak demand of 288 megawatts. Ayan Mellejor, Inquirer Mindanao

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TAGS: Consumer issues, Electricity, electricity bills, Electricity production and distribution, Energy, Energy Regulatory Commission, generation cost, generation-rate-adjustment mechanism, National Power Corp, Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management Corp.
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