ISLAMABAD: The government has asked the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) to increase K-Electric’s consumer tariff by up to Rs6.02 per unit under two past quarterly adjustments and allow its recovery from consumers in three months — April to June — to ensure national uniform tariff.
The government has already notified an equivalent increase in tariff for consumers of ex-Wapda Discos. For fulfilling the formality, Nepra will hold a public hearing on April 3 to discuss the hike in KE tariff.
Under the request made by the Power Division, the tariff for up to 200 units of consumption in the domestic category would increase by Rs3.03 per unit during April and May and then Rs1.55 per unit in June. For consumption between 201 and 700 units per month, the rates would go up by Rs4.76 per unit in April and May and by 1.55 per unit in June 2023.
For all other categories, the tariff increase would be Rs6.02 per unit in these three months.
The Power Division has filed two separate motions before Nepra requesting an application of up to Rs4.45 per unit for the first quarter of the FY23 (July to September) and Rs1.55 per unit for the second quarter of FY22 (October to December) to the consumers of KE.
The average hike of the KE consumers for the first quarter of FY23 is Rs3.21 per unit, while it is Rs1.55 per unit for the second quarter of FY22. The Power Division has asked Nepra to issue separate schedules of tariff for these two quarters so that recoveries could be ensured before the close of the current fiscal year in line with budgetary subsidies.
For the application of rates charged from ex-Discos consumers for the first quarter of FY23, to be allowed to recover from consumers of K-Electric based on consumption of February and March in the billing month of April to May.
For the application of rates charged from ex-Discos consumers for the second quarter of FY22, to be allowed to recover from consumers of K-Electric based on consumption of July, August and September 2022 in the billing month of April, May and June.
Nepra had already allowed a hike of up to Rs4.45 per unit in power tariff, empowering the ex-Wapda Discos to transfer an additional burden of Rs42 billion to electricity consumers on account of quarterly adjustment for the first quarter of FY23.
The regulator had directed Discos to ensure that the additional burden is transferred during February and March and will have an average impact of Rs3.30 per unit on the consumers within a range for various consumer categories between Rs1.4874 per unit to Rs4.45 per unit for Discos.
The government has told Nepra that under the National Electricity Policy 2021, it could maintain a uniform consumer-end tariff for K-Electric and state-owned distribution companies (even after privatisation) through the incorporation of direct/indirect subsidies.
Accordingly, KE’s applicable uniform variable charge is also required to be modified to recover the revenue requirements of the power utility, determined by the regulator consistent with the uniform national tariff of Discos which had already been approved by the federal cabinet.
Published in Dawn, March 29th, 2023