Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) is set to hold a public hearing from next Monday over the proposed price hike of electricity.
The public hearing will be held between September 25 to October 4, on proposals submitted by six state-owned electricity production and distribution companies, to fix new bulk and retail power tariffs, BERC Secretary Md Mahbubur Rahman told the Dhaka Tribune.
The hearing will be held at the TCB Bhaban in the city’s Karwan Bazar area.
Speaking on the issue, Prof Samsul Alam, adviser to the Consumers Association of Bangladesh (CAB), told the Dhaka Tribune: “There is no need to increase the price of electricity, as the price of furnace oil, which is the primary fuel used by of power plants, continues to decrease.
“At present, the prices of furnace oil are low in the international market, so the price in the domestic market should also be low,” he added.
The hearing on bulk power tariff proposals of the Power Development Board (PDB) will be held on September 25, retail proposals of the PDB on September 26, Rural Electrification Board (REB) on September 27, Dhaka Power Distribution Company (DPDC) on September 28, Dhaka Electric Supply Company (Desco) on October 2, West Zone Power Company on October 3 and North-West Zone Power Distribution Company on October 4.
On February 20, the state-owned PDB sent a proposal to BERC to increase the power tariff at bulk level by Tk0.72 per unit.
According to the PDB proposal, it is necessary to raise the power tariff from Tk4.87 to Tk5.59 in the current fiscal year to cover losses suffered from purchasing electricity from costly rental and quick rental power plants.
On March 7, the PDB sent yet another proposal to the BERC, asking that steps be taken to increase the retail price of electricity by Tk0.21 per unit. The proposal stated that it is necessary to increase the retail power tariff from Tk6.73 to Tk6.95.
The state-owned company also proposed that service charges be increased based on consumer categories.
Meanwhile, in the proposals, REB of Bangladesh sought an 11% hike in retail tariff, West-Zone Power Distribution Company Ltd sought 10.36%, DPDC 6.24%, North West Zone Power Distribution Company Ltd 16%, and Desco 6.34% respectively.