Judicial

Public hearing on proposed hike in bulk power tariff May 18

Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) will hold public hearing on a proposal for raising electricity tariff at bulk level on May 18.

The state-run Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB) moved the proposal last month urging the energy regulator to set the bulk power tariff at Tk8.58 instead of existing 5.17 per kilowatt hour (each unit).

The BERC in public notice informed that the public hearing will be held at Biam Auditorium in the city from 10.30 am to 5 pm on May 18.

It also requested the interested parties and individuals who want to participate in the hearing to send the opinions in written by April 28 and enlist their names for the hearing.

The BPDB claims in its proposal to the energy regulator that it will incur a loss of Tk 30,251 crore in the current fiscal year if the bulk tariff is not raised.

It attributed to the increasing fuel cost and other soaring expenses for financial losses saying that the production cost of electricity has gone up to Tk 4.24 per unit in 2022 from Tk 2.13 in the fiscal year 2019-20.

Power industry insiders said that it is obvious that if the bulk electricity is raised, it will ultimately push up the tariff at retail level. Any rise in bulk tariff will be applicable for the power distribution companies as they are the bulk consumers.

They buy electriocity from BPDB in bulk and then sell it to the public at retail rates. So, the public hearing on retail tariff will come consequently, said an industry insider.

All the state-owned power distribution companies have already submitted their respective proposals to the BERC to raise the power rates at retail level.

But this time, the BERC is going to hold public hearing on bulk tariff proposal keeping pending the request for raising retail price.

BERC member Syed Mokbul-e-Elahi Chowdhury said the it wants to first settle the bulk tariff proposal.

“This time we want to keep the hearing only on the bulk tariff proposal… the issue of retail tariff will be settled later by the commission”, he told UNB.

Source: United News of Bangladesh