ISLAMABAD: The National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) has agreed in principle to allow electricity distribution companies (Discos) to increase their tariffs by Rs 2.87 per unit for March 2022 to recover an additional cost of Rs 28.9 billion under the Monthly Fuel Charge Adjustment (FCA) mechanism.
The decision was taken at a public hearing on Wednesday, chaired by President Nepra Tauseef H Farooqi, Vice President Rafique Ahmad Shaikh and KP member Maqsood Anwar Khan.
CPPA-G, in its tariff adjustment application, had requested Rs 3.16 per unit to recover Rs 31.8 billion from consumers as an additional cost for March 2022.
During the hearing, officials from the National Power Control Center (NPCC) noted that demand had increased by 24% in March 2022 compared to a projection of just 4%.
NPCC officials argued that the Met Office forecast was not accurate for the weather, adding that the Met Office was also forecasting rain at the end of March, which turned out to be wrong .
Nepra approves Rs 2.86 per unit electricity tariff increase for March
Nepra Vice President Rafique Ahmad Shaikh criticized NPCC officials for not having an accurate weather report when anyone could access weather forecast data.
Officials confirmed the shortfall reached 3,000MW as generation rose to 18,500MW as demand topped 21,000MW, saying some coal-fired power plant units were still shut down due to inventory issues ; and further stated that most of the recovery from Discos was paid to the factories for the cost of energy so that they could purchase fuel.
Nepra also deducted Rs 2.8 billion M/s Lucky Power Plant as pre-COD sale but ordered the power company representative to sit down with CPPA-G and sort this out and recover its amount. However, if the problem is not solved, the amount deducted will not be refunded to the electricity company.
Nepra’s Oversight and Enforcement Department said data indicated that the financial impact of breaching the merit order and lowering RLNG’s bid was Rs 350 million as of March 2022. However, Nepra’s tariff was only adjusted by 9 million rupees.
According to data submitted to Nepra, in March 2022 hydel production was recorded at 1,704 GWH, which represented 16.36% of total production for the whole month. Electricity generation from a coal plant was 2,586.62 GWh (24.83% of total generation) at a rate of 12.4 rupees per unit. FRO’s production was 1,106.2 GWH (10.62% of total production) at 222.5214 rupees per unit.
Electricity generation from gas-fired power plants was 992.7 GWh (9.53%) at 7.7672 rupees per unit. RLNG’s production was 1,965.68 GWh (18.87% of total production) at 14.3677 rupees per unit.
Generation from nuclear sources was 1,563.66 GWh at Rs 1.00355 per unit (15% of total generation) and electricity imported from Iran was 42.75 GWh at Rs 17.35565 per unit .
During the hearing, a resident of the city of Bahria, Masood ur-Rehman, raised the issue of a higher tariff charged to residents compared to other IESCO consumers.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2022