MANILA—The Manila Electric Company (Meralco) said Friday it will hike power bills by PHP0.92 per kilowatthour (kWh) this month, mainly due to a higher generation charge.
According to a statement from the power firm, the increase from the generation charge brings the overall new rate to PHP9 per kWh.
The distribution utility said the normalization of capacity fees, which were low in January, was offset this month due to the return to normal levels of the Pagbilao and Ilijan power plants. This pushed the generation charge by PHP0.62 per kWh to PHP4.32 per kWh.
Moreover, the generation charge hiked due to the lower dispatch of power suppliers and independent power producers caused by scheduled and forced outages, despite the lower demand last January.
Meralco also attributed the increase in the generation charge to higher fuel prices from the quarterly repricing of the Malampaya natural gas and the slight depreciation of the peso against the US dollar.
Last month, the distribution utility sourced 38.6 percent of its electricity from power supply agreements, 38.1 percent from independent power producers, and 23.2 percent from the wholesale electricity spot market (WESM). The WESM charges fell by PhP0.25 per kWh last month, which mitigated the hike.
The transmission charge, which is paid to the National Grid Corp. of the Philippines, also increased by PHP0.15 per kWh due to the hike in power delivery service charges triggered by the implementation of higher interim maximum allowable revenue and the higher ancillary service charges.
For other billing components, the taxes and other charges also went up by PHP0.15 per kWh.
Meralco stressed its distribution, supply and metering charges remain unchanged since July 2015, adding it does not earn from pass-through charges.