MANILA, PHILIPPINES – The Manila Electric Company (MERALCO) announced today that after a reduction in total rates experienced by customers in their January bill, overall electricity rates increased to P10.4067 per kWh this month from last month’s P9.8385 per kWh, mainly due to the normalization of generation charges. The upward adjustment of P0.5682 per kWh will mean an increase of around P114 in the total bill of a typical household consuming 200kWh.
Higher PSA and WESM charges bring up the generation charge
From P4.9119 per kWh last month, generation charge for February went up to P5.8939 per kWh, an increase of P0.9820 per kWh.
The generation charge increase is primarily due to higher charges from plants under Power Supply Agreements (PSA) and Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM).
After the reduction in PSA charges in January due to the early completion of annual capacity fee payments for the previous year, capacity fees this month returned to levels prescribed in the PSAs approved by the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC). The return to normal levels of capacity fees, particularly of Sual Unit 1, Ilijan, Pagbilao Unit 1 and PEDC, was the main reason for the PhP1.9217 per kWh increase in PSA charges this February. The share of PSAs to Meralco’s total requirement this month was at 37%.
Charges from the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) went up by P1.4141 per kWh due to tighter supply conditions in Luzon as several large power plants went on scheduled maintenance outage this month. Meanwhile, cost of power from the Independent Power Producers (IPPs) was slightly lower by P0.0042 per kWh due to strengthening of the Peso against the US dollar. About 96% of IPP charges are dollar-denominated. WESM and IPPs provided 18% and 45% of Meralco’s supply needs, respectively.
Other charges decrease
Transmission charge of residential customers, taxes, and other charges went down by PhP0.4138 per kWh this month.
Meralco’s distribution, supply, and metering charges, meanwhile, have remained unchanged for 43 months, after these registered reductions in July 2015. Meralco reiterated that it does not earn from the pass-through charges, such as the generation and transmission charges. Payment for the generation charge goes to the power suppliers, while payment for the transmission charge goes to the NGCP. Taxes and other public policy charges like the FIT-All rate are remitted to the government.
Meralco provides energy efficiency tips for customers
As summer approaches, Meralco once again encourages its customers to continue practicing energy efficiency initiatives to help manage their electricity consumption. These include everyday household tips that may help save energy, such as: (i) unplugging appliances when not in use to avoid “phantom load”, (ii) using the aircon at mid-setting or at 25 degrees Celsius for maximum efficiency, (iii) using a power board or strip which can supply power to several appliances at once and allows a user to conveniently turn them off simultaneously with just one switch, and (iv) maximizing natural light during daytime and keeping appliances well maintained to ensure optimal performance. For more helpful tips, customers may visit Meralco’s website at www.meralco.com.ph or its social media accounts, twitter @meralco and facebook at www.facebook.com/meralco.