Meralco: New power rate hike for March

March 10, 2022 Arlene Rivera 484 views

AFTER 2 consecutive months of rate reductions, the Manila Electric Company (Meralco) on Thursday a power rate hike for March.

In a statement issued by Meralco, the overall rate for a typical household slightly went up by P0.0625 to P9.6467 per kWh from last month’s P9.5842 per kWh.

This is equivalent to an increase of around P13 in the total bill of a residential customer consuming 200Kwh.

The overall increase in this month’s power rates would have been higher if not for the implementation of an additional Distribution Rate True-Up refund.

To recall, Meralco’s proposal to refund around P13.9 billion distribution-related charges was approved by the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) in early 2021. This is equivalent to a rate refund of P0.2761 per kWh for residential customers, implemented beginning March 2021.

This amount represented the difference between the “Actual Weighted Average Tariff” and the ERC-approved Interim Average Rate for distribution-related charges for the period July 2015 to November 2020.

On March 7, 2022, Meralco received an ERC Order dated February 23, 2022, expanding the coverage of the refund to include December 2020 to December 2021 period – amounting to an additional P4.8 billion. For residential customers, the refund is equivalent to another P0.1923 per kWh that will be implemented for 12 months.

Residential customers will see a total of P0.4684 per kWh refund under a line item called “Dist True-Up” in their bills this month.

Generation charge went up by P0.2780 to P5.4737 this month from the P5.1957 per kWh registered the previous month, mainly due to higher charges from the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM).

Despite the improvement of supply conditions in the Luzon grid, WESM prices remained elevated in February and the secondary price cap was imposed 5.63% of the time. With the increase in demand and the scheduled maintenance outage of Quezon Power and First Gas-San Lorenzo plants, Meralco sourced additional supply from the WESM in the February supply month. As a result, WESM charges increased by P13.4211 per kWh.