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PIAF urges govt to reduce high energy costs

  • May 9, 2022
Frontier Star

The Pakistan Industrial and Traders Associations Front (PIAF) on Saturday said that the high cost of doing business has proved to be dangerous for Pakistan's industry, discouraging investment both in capacity and capability, calling for lessening the burden of heavy taxes on the power sector.

It asked the government to shut down all expensive oil-based power plants to ensure availability of cheaper energy for consumers.

PIAF senior vice chairman Nasir Hameed and vice chairman Javed Siddiqi, in a joint statement issued here, condemned the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA) for shifting power distribution companies' inefficiencies' burden to the consumers by jacking up the tariff by Rs2.87 per unit under Fuel Charges Adjustment (FCA) for the months of March and Feb.

Nasir Hameed said that constant hike in power tariff on the plea of fuel adjustment has pushed the electricity prices higher and added to the already soaring cost of trade and industry.

According to reports, Nepra, after incorporating several adjustments, reviewed and assessed an increase of Rs2.86 per unit in the applicable tariff for XWDISCOs on account of variations in the fuel charges for the month of March.

According to the decision, the power regulator approved Rs.2.8 per unit increase in the electricity rate on account of the FCA to burden the consumers with around Rs29 billion. The increase in tariff of March shall be charged in the billing month of May this year from all consumer categories of XWDiscos.

Javed Siddiqi said that the regulatory authority had earlier increased power tariff by Rs3.09 per unit on account of FCA for Dec 2021 which placed an additional burden of Rs30 billion on the power consumers while more than 8.5 billion units of electricity were used in December last year.

He lamented that the previous government did not pay heed to rehabilitation and maintenance of old power plants which caused several system constraints, inflicting heavy losses.

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