New electricity bill cuts planned to start in April

Sok Chan / Khmer Times No Comments Share:
The government is planning new cuts on the cost of electricity. KT/Chor Sokunthea

Starting on April 1, the Electricity Authority of Cambodia (EAC) will continue to bring down the cost of electricity for households and enterprises in Phnom Penh and a number of provinces, according to a recent announcement by the agency.

In a statement released earlier this month and signed by EAC’s chairman Ty Norn, the agency announced that it plans to further reduce the price of electricity in the kingdom to meet the goals outlined in the government’s new power supply strategy.

In Phnom Penh and Takhmao, households that consume more than 201 kilowatt hour per month will see tariffs reduced from 770 riel ($0.19) to 750 riel ($0.18) per kWh.

However, for families that use less than 50 kWh, the price of electricity will remain unchanged at 610 riel ($0.15) per kWh.

For commercial and industrial enterprises operating in the capital and in Takhmao, the cost of electricity will also fall. For example, medium-sized enterprises that use EDC’s transformers will see tariffs go from 718 riel ($0.1790) to 717 riel ($0.1786) per kWh.

People and companies in the following provinces will also enjoy lower tariffs: Kampong Speu, Sihanoukville, Takeo, Kampot, Battambang, Banteay Meanchey, Siem Reap, Prey Veng, Kampong Cham, Tboung Khmum, Kratie, Stung Treng and Mondulkiri.

Mr Norin said in the announcement that stakeholders have until February 28 to provide input on the planned changes.

Song Saran, CEO of Amru Rice, said recently he was glad the government was prioritising reducing the price of electricity in the agriculture sector. Amru Rice pays 16 to 20 cents per kWh at their factories, which Mr Saran claims is too expensive to make the sector attractive to foreign investors.

“Twelve cents per kWh would be a great improvement and will really help the sector,” he said.

He noted that some provinces have particularly high electricity bills, such as Preah Vihear, where people pay as much as 50 cents per kWh.

With products now being manufactured all over the country, Mr Saran said, the government needs to make sure the cost of electricity is reduced evenly across the nation.

Last month, the government announced it had subsidised $51 million worth of electricity across the country in 2017 to help low-income households. The subsidy was paid for using revenue from Electicite du Cambodge’s (EdC).

According to EAC’s annual report, the amount of energy produced in the kingdom has increased 11.4 times in the last 15 years. In 2017, total energy output was 2,283 MWs, up from 2,115 MWs in 2016.

Last year, Cambodians consumed 7,966 kWh of energy, while the year before consumption equaled 7,175 kWh. With seven hydropower plants scheduled to be fully operational by the end of 2018, the report forecasts that total energy output will reach 1,329MWs, of which 538MWs will come from coal power plants, 251MWs from fossil fuel power stations, and 72MWs from renewable energy sources.

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