Wed, Sep 09, 2015 - Page 13 News List

Review committee decides on 2.33% electricity rate cut

By Lauly Li  /  Staff reporter

Electricity rates are scheduled to drop by an average of 2.33 percent, or NT$0.06 per kilowatt-hour (kWh), to reflect falling global crude prices, the Ministry of Economic Affairs said yesterday.

With the declines in international crude oil and natural gas prices, state-run Taiwan Power Co (Taipower, 台電) is expected to save NT$18.1 billion (US$548.43 million) in power-generation costs, Bureau of Energy Director-General Lin Chuan-neng (林全能) told a news conference.

The bureau said households that use 350kWh per month or less would see electricity bills cut by NT$21 per month under the new pricing scheme.

About 4 million households use 350kWh or less per month, Taipower statistics showed.

The state utility said it would announce the scale of price reductions for commercial and industrial users before the new rates take effect on Oct. 1.

Taipower president Chu Wen-chen (朱文成) said electricity rates would not decline for households that use more than 1,000kWh per month and commercial users that use more than 1,500kWh per month.

HELPING HAND

Although Taipower has not yet finalized electricity rates for the whole spectrum of users, the company plans to give the highest price reductions to households that use less than 120kWh per month in order to “take care of” economically vulnerable families, Chu said.

At an electricity price review committee meeting yesterday, Taipower proposed that the NT$3.8 billion cost of shuttering the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant in New Taipei City’s Gongliao District (貢寮) and the loss of NT$465 million that occurred because of damage caused by Typhoon Soudelor be factored into setting the new electricity rates, Lin said.

However, the company’s proposal was rejected by the committee after 13 out of 15 members said that the costs were non-operational and should not be taken into account, Lin said.

The committee is to convene for another round of meetings in March next year, at which it is to set electricity rates for April to October next year, the ministry said.

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