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  • By : CJG
  • Mar 11, 2024

Transmission charges up for March

BENECO consumers will expect an increase in their monthly power bill this March, 2024 mainly due to an increase in the transmission charges imposed by the National Grid Corporation of the Phil. (NGCP) particular on its ancillary service charges.

As per BENECO’s computation, the increase is quite substantial, prompting BENECO to ask the NGCP the reason for the sudden surge of the ancillary service charge.

In a letter dated March 7 to NGCP’s Ma. Cynthia Manrique, NGCP’s revenue and regulatory affairs head, BENECO general manager Melchor Licoben sought to clarify the sudden increase in the ancillary service charge from January to February, 2024.

“There is a whooping increase of 509 per cent for the contingency reserve,” Licoben stated. This translates to a cost of P21.3 million for BENECO which is a 218 per cent increase from the previous January billing.

NGCP is the duly franchised operator of the country’s transmission system. It collects from distribution utilities transmission charges of which ancillary services is a component.

Due to the increase, residential consumers will expect an increase of P0.3667 per kilowatt hour (kWh) in transmission charges transmission charges alone. This will also mean an increase of P0.4705 per kWh for low voltage commercial industrial consumers, public buildings and streetlights. For high voltage consumers – like commercial and public buildings -- the increase will be P203.83 per kWh.

“Upon receipt of the latest NGCP billing last March 6, we were alarmed when we saw the P21.3 million increase in the transmission billing. BENECO immediately wrote them a clarificatory letter with an earnest request that they also publish the reason for NGCP’s almost P22 million pesos increase in transmission charges billing, “ Olive Bete, Executive Services and Regulatory Compliance Officer (ESRCO) from the office of the General Manager, explained.

For residential consumers, they will also pay more - from P9.9796 per kWh in February to P10.4435 per kWh in March. This means an increase of P0.4369 per kWh. So, ifor a typical family that consumers an average of 100 kWh a month, they will have to shell out P46.39 per kWh more for the month of March, including value added tax.

Licoben further asked NGCP to make an advisory for consumers’ guidance which Licoben said has not been done up of this writing. The meter reading has started today and the bill the meter readers will issue to the consumers will now reflect the increase in ancillary charges. ***CJG

Photo by Andrey Metelev on Unsplash