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BERC announces 5.3% retail power price hike

  • Published at 11:54 am November 23rd, 2017
  • Last updated at 12:22 am November 24th, 2017
BERC announces 5.3% retail power price hike
The Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) has raised the price of retail electricity Tk0.35 per unit, or  5.3% on a weighted average. BERC Chairman Monowar Islam disclosed the new price at a press conference at its office in Dhaka's Karwan Bazaar on Thursday. The Bangladesh Rural Electrification Board (REB) currently supplies power to homes, irrigation pumps and charitable organisations, which make up 92% of all its consumers, at Tk4.62 per unit though the cost of that power is Tk6.78. The rest of the consumers, who include commercial enterprises and industrial units, buy power at a slightly higher price. The government generally gives subsidies to the power sector as loans with 3% interest. This loan increases the financial burden on the Power Development Board (PDB) and REB. BERC held a seven-day public hearing between September 25 and October 4 on proposals submitted by six state-owned electricity agencies and distribution companies, in order to fix new bulk and retail power tariffs. The commission has to give a decision on electricity tariff within 90 days of the public hearings, as required by the BERC act. On February 20, the PDB sent a proposal to BERC to raise the power tariff at the bulk level by Tk0.72 per unit. Besides, REB, West-Zone Power Distribution Company Ltd, Dhaka Power Distribution Company (DPDC), North West Zone Power Distribution Company Ltd, and Dhaka Electric Supply Company (Desco) have also sought hikes in the retail tariff. BERC last raised the power tariff for retail consumers on September 01, 2015, by 2.93% or Tk0.18 per unit on a weighted average . It had also similarly raised the bulk power tariff by Tk0.23 per unit.
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