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Power bills to shock consumers as tariff raised by Rs4.30 per unit

ISLAMABAD  –  The National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) Thursday allowed an increase of Rs4.30 per unit in power tariff on account of monthly fuel charges adjustment (FCA).

The Authority, after incorporating various adjustments, reviewed and assessed an increase of Rs.4.3020/kWh in the applicable tariff for XWDISCOs on account of variations in the fuel charges for the month of November 2021, said the NEPRA decision issued here.

The decision will put a burden of Rs 41 billion on the electricity consumers.

The increase shall be applicable to all the consumer categories except lifeline consumers and XWDISCOs shall reflect the fuel charges adjustment in respect of November 2021 in the billing month of January 2022, said the decision.

Nepra had conducted public hearing on the petition of the Central Power Purchasing Agency Guarantee Limited (CPPA-G) for an increase of Rs 4.3329 per unit in power tariff on account of monthly FCA for November 2021.

In a petition submitted to Nepra, on behalf of the power distribution companies (XWDISOCs), the CPPA-G had said that for the month of November the reference fuel charges from the consumers were Rs 3.7381 per unit while the actual fuel cost was Rs 8.071 per unit. Therefore, it should be allowed to pass the increase of Rs 4.3329 per unit to the consumers.

In its decision, the Authority observed that CPPA-G has purchased energy of 36.692 GWh from Tavanir Iran in November 2021 at a cost of Rs.483.4 million. The Authority also observed that CPPA-G has filed its request with the Authority for approval of extension of contract between CPPA-G and Tavanir Iran for import of power up-to 104 MW for the period from 01.01.2020 to 31.12.2021, which is under consideration of the Authority. In view thereof, the cost of electricity purchased from Tavanir Iran is being allowed strictly on provisional basis, subject to its adjustment once the Authority decides the extension in the contract between CPPA-G and Tavanir Iran. The cost being allowed on provisional basis is to avoid piling up of the cost and one time burdening of the consumers in future.

CPPA-G also claimed an amount of Rs.13,585 million on account of previous adjustments in the FCA of November 2021. The same has been verified as Rs. 13,367 million and accordingly has been included in the monthly FCAs of November 2021.

Regarding adjustment of Uch-Il, CPPA-G has claimed an amount of Rs. 6,213.71 million pertaining to the period from November 2013 to December 2019, owing to revision in gas well head prices by OGRA. Upon directions of the Authority, CPPA-G provided verified invoices for the relevant period, whereby, the amount claimed has been revised as Rs.6,030.759 million. However, as per verification by the Authority regarding energy and PPA factors based on the data provided by CPPA-G, the amount of previous adjustments works out as Rs.5,955.14 million, which has accordingly been included in the monthly FCA of November 2021.

Nepra Chairman, Tauseef H Farooqi presided over the hearing.

Taking notice of increased electricity bills, sent by Discos to the consumers, the Nepra chairman said that he was shocked to see his electricity bill and asked that information of the overcharging of FCA by the distribution companies should be shared with the officials of Nepra.

Showing his annoyance over the expensive power generation, the Nepra chairman questioned why coal plants were under utilised in November? Pointing towards CPPA and NPC, he said that you are just generating electricity and do not bother about whether it is consuming huge expenses.