Meralco rates dip for fourth straight month in August

Manila Electric Co. said power rates fell P0.2055 per kilowatt-hour in August to P8.4911 per kWh from P8.6966 per kWh due in July on lower spot market prices and the repricing of natural gas.

“This is equivalent to a reduction of around P41 in the total bill of residential customers consuming 200 kWh a month,” Meralco spokesman Joe Zaldarriaga said.

“This month’s overall rate is also the lowest in nearly three years since September 2017,” he said. 

Meralco said power rates declined by over P1 per kWh since the start of the year.  The latest rate is also significantly lower than P9.5674 per kWh in August 2019.

“The decrease in WESM [Wholesale Electricity Spot Market] prices and the natural gas repricing lead to the lower generation charge,” Zaldarriaga said.

Generation charges went down by P0.2103 per kWh to P4.1241 per kWh in August from P4.3344 per kWh in July because of lower rates at WESM, the country’s trading floor of electricity and reduced charges of Meralco’s independent power producer suppliers.  

WESM charges went down by P1.12 per kWh in August on improved supply in the Luzon grid and fewer plant outages. 

Meralco procured 15.5 percent of its supply needs from WESM during the July supply period which is billed in August.

Cost of power from Meralco’s IPPs decreased by P0.3284 per kWh because of lower natural gas prices as a result of quarterly repricing.

The price of natural gas from Malampaya is indexed to international crude oil prices. The significant reduction in crude oil prices in the first half was reflected in the Malampaya natural gas price in Aiugust, while the peso appreciation also contributed to reduction in IPP rates.  

Meanwhile, purchases from PSAs went up by P0.2722 per kWh on lower average plant dispatch and lower force majeure claims.

Meralco continued to invoke the FM provision in its PSA with First Gen Hydro Power Corp. because of the reduced power demand in its service area during the community quarantine period.

The FM claim totaled P82 million in August, equivalent to customer savings of P0.0285 per kWh in the generation charges.  

Topics: Manila Electric Co. , Meralco , power rates
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