• Mon. May 22nd, 2023

Discos seek Nepra’s nod for additional Rs2.01/unit

ISLAMABAD: The power distribution companies (discos) have pleaded with the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) for permission to collect an additional Rs2.01/unit from the consumers in their June electricity bills on account of monthly fuel charges adjustments (FCA) for April.

Similarly, the K-Electric has also sought the Nepra’s permission for an additional collection of Rs0.489/unit in June 2023 bills, as the consumers paid less than the actual power generation cost, especially in view of imported gas and oil in April.

The Karachi-based power utility has also asked for an additional increase of Rs5.17/unit in its quarterly adjustment for January-March 2022. The power regulator will hold public hearings on these petitions on May 31. Under the tariff mechanism, changes in fuel cost are passed on to consumers only on a monthly basis through an automatic mechanism, while quarterly tariff adjustments on account of variation in the power purchase price, capacity charges, variable operation and maintenance costs, use of system charges, including the impact transmission and distribution losses, are built in the base tariff by the federal government.

Once the petitions are approved, the discos will collect Rs10.397 billion and K-Electric Rs747 million under FCA from consumers in June’s bills.

A petition submitted by the Central Power Purchasing Agency (CPPA) on behalf of XWDiscos said that for the month of April, the reference fuel charges from the consumers were Rs8.3875/unit, while the actual fuel cost was Rs10.3975/unit. Therefore, it should be allowed to pass the increase of Rs2.01/unit to consumers.

In the data shared with the regulator, the CPPA-G informed that 10,010.3 GWh of electricity was generated during the month at the cost of Rs102.49 (or Rs10.2384/unit) and 9,734.9 GWh had been delivered to Discos with 2.51 percent as transmission losses.

Power generation during April 2023 went down by 23 percent year-on-year to 10,010 GWh, compared to 12,960 GWh during April 2022. However, over the previous month’s (March 23) generation of 8741.3 GWh, it increased by 15 percent.

During April 2023, the average generation cost was Rs10.2384/unit against Rs8.217/unit in March 2023, depicting an increase of 24.6 percent. However, when compared with the same month last year, the cost of generation was almost the same.

The increase in generation cost over the previous month was due to a decline in nuclear and hydel power generation and an increase in coal and RFO-based generation which increased by over 36 percent and nine percent respectively.

Hydel generation decreased to 1872.24 GWh (18.7pc) during April from 2,001.6 GWh (24.5pc) during March, indicating a decline of 6.46 percent.

The data further said that 222.6 GWh (2.22pc) of expensive electricity was generated from furnace oil during April, which was 450 percent higher than the 40.53GWh (0.46pc) RFO-based generation of March. The RFO-based electricity in April cost Rs23.194/unit, which was nine percent higher than March’s cost of Rs21.2769/unit. No electricity was generated from high-speed diesel during the month.

The natural gas-based generation contributed 1,189.4 GWh (11.88pc) of electricity to the national grid in April at Rs11.864/unit. In March, the gas-based power generation was 1107GWh (12.66pc) with a cost of 11.26/unit, showing that its generation cost increased by 5.36 percent.

The generation from coal-based power plants increased by 36.4 percent to 1883.13 GWh (18.17.57pc) in April from 1333.5GWh (15.26pc) in March. Coal was a comparatively cheaper source for power generation viz-a-viz RFO and RLNG, and it cost Rs12.2696/unit, however, its generation cost was 41.4 percent more than Rs8.6768/unit in March 2023.

The cost of RLNG-based electricity was reduced to Rs23.835/unit in April from Rs24.3095/unit during the previous month. The RLNG-based electricity contribution to the national grid increased by 35.5 percent to 2417.75 GWh (24.15pc) against 1784.6 GWh (20.42pc) in March 2023.

Generation from nuclear power plants decreased to 11916 GWh (19.14pc) in April from 2,002.01 GWh (22.9pc) in March. The per unit cost of nuclear power was Rs1.055/unit against Rs1.0803/unit in March.

In April, Pakistan imported 30.46GWh electricity from Iran at the cost of Rs23.45/unit. From bagasse, 81.17 GWh of electricity was generated at Rs5.9822/unit. Wind, solar and mixed sources contributed 322.9GWh, 125.8GWh, and 13.35GWh respectively to the national grid during April.

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