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Electricity tariffs to rise 4.98% from next quarter

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Post by Benny on 26th June 2008, 3:49 pm

Electricity tariffs to rise 4.98% from next quarter PhpI5En10
By Imelda Saad, Channel NewsAsia | Posted: 25 June 2008 1641 hrs

SINGAPORE : Electricity tariffs will go up by 4.98 per cent or by 1.19 cents per kilo watt per hour (kWh) for all households from the next quarter, beginning July 1.

Singapore Power said the hike is due to higher electricity costs arising from higher fuel prices.

The forward fuel oil price is 11.03 per cent higher than that of US$74.40 per barrel for the current quarter.

The electricity tariff is revised every quarter and this latest hike is lower, in percentage terms, than what it was three months ago. Still, coming at the back of rising inflation and an overall increase in the cost of living, not everyone is taking the news well.

"I spend about $100 on bills already, as well as other expenses. So it will be quite difficult for me to cope," said one Singapore resident.

Another said: "Just use less electricity, and switch off the lights when not in use."

Low-income families are expected to be hardest hit, but grassroots organisations said there are measures to help residents cope.

"We call it the Power Up scheme, where we work with our grassroots organisations and grassroots advisors (to help those) who could not afford to pay their electricity bills and had their electricity supply terminated. So this scheme is to help them restore their electricity supply," said Dr Teo Ho Pin, Mayor of North West District.

But coping is what some motorists are having difficulty with, now that pump prices have gone up again.

Since Monday, petrol prices are up 5 cents a litre and 10 cents for diesel. The latest to join in is the Singapore Petroleum Company (SPC), which has nearly 40 stations island-wide.

"I feel that it's illogical, the way fuel companies are earning so much money. Their profit margins are so high, yet the prices are rising," said one member of the public.

Others like Shell, Caltex, and ExxonMobil have already announced their hikes - the 13th consecutive increase since last July.

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