ISLAMABAD: The National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) on Tuesday allowed 55 paisa per unit increase in power tariff for all the power distribution companies, except K-Electric, on account of fuel price adjustment for April.
The decision was taken at a monthly public hearing presided over by Nepra’s vice chairman Rehmatullah Baloch.
The Central Power Purchasing Agency (CPPA) on behalf of the distribution companies (DISCOs) had filed a petition for tariff increase saying the actual fuel cost in April was higher than that charged to the consumers and hence an increase of 57 paisa per unit be allowed to be recovered from consumers next month.
New rate not applicable to ‘lifeline’ and K-Electric consumers
The higher tariff approved by the regulator is expected to generate about Rs5.2 billion additional revenue to the power companies during the next billing month i.e. June.
The adjustment will, however, not be applicable to lifeline consumers (who use less than 50 units [kwh] per month) as well as K-Electric consumers.
At the hearing, Nepra questioned low utilisation of Regasified Liquefied Natural Gas (RLNG)-based plants in general and particularly the frequent tripping of RLNG plant at Balloki in Kasur, Punjab.
The CPPA officials confirmed that Balloki power plant had been facing technical issues but it was currently generating 1,160MW.
The regulator highlighted that Balloki power plant remained closed for 327 hours in April and sought a written explanation on the matter.
The CPPA had sought permission for increasing consumer tariff by 57 paisa per unit. It told the regulator that it had charged reference fuel price of Rs5.2359 per unit from consumers in April, while the actual cost turned out to be Rs5.8055 per unit.
The CCPA said that a total of 9,717.38 gigawatt-hours (GWh) of electricity was generated in April at a total cost of Rs53.63bn. Net electricity delivered to power distribution companies was 9,511.79GWh, whereas transmission losses came to 180.34GWh or 2.12pc
Generation from other sources
The regulator was told that the highest 30.83pc (or 2,995.8GWh) electricity was generated from RLNG-based plants at a cost of Rs9.40 per unit. Besides, 22.94pc (or 2,229.4GWh) was generated from hydel sources at zero cost.
Around 1,789.50GWh (or 18.4pc) of electricity was generated from natural gas at a cost of Rs6.068 per unit. Coal-fired power generation contributed 1,005.04GWh, accounting for 10.34pc of total generation at a cost of Rs6.7889 per unit.
Nuclear plants’ share was 7.67pc (or 745.20GWh) at a cost of Rs1.013 per unit. The CPPA purchased 481.05GWh of electricity from residual fuel oil (RFO)-based power plants at a cost of Rs12.3406 per unit.
Residual Furnace Oil-based electricity share was 4.95pc. However, in April no electricity was generated from high speed diesel.
During the month, 42.43GWh of electricity was imported from Iran at Rs11.5709 per unit. From bagasse (sugarcane waste), 66.43GWh was generated at a cost of Rs6.1199 per unit.
Also, 267.44GWh of electricity was generated from wind and 66.5GWh from solar sources.
Published in Dawn, May 29th, 2019