Wapda / KESC

Demos against fuel surcharge

Posted on December 15, 2011. Filed under: NEPRA, Tariff, Wapda / KESC |

LAHORE, Dec 13: Protests against imposition and recovery of fuel adjustment surcharge through electricity bills were reported from Multan Road and Defence areas on Tuesday with no loss of property or life.

Consumers in both the areas gathered at the local offices of the Lahore Electric Supply Company (Lesco) and wanted getting the surcharge deducted from their bills.

However, the Lesco employees refused to oblige them this time, triggering protests by those who had gathered there.

`Problem with the people is that they think that court`s stay order in their favour has been extended which was basically for industrial consumers and not for domesticones who are trying to avoid payment,` says a Lesco official.

He said they (Lesco officials) also had this confusion and they temporarily deducted the surcharges last month.

This month, the government had told the company to recover the surcharge, and the company had included the surcharge in the bills, he added.`What is hurting the people more and makes the fuel adjustment surcharge look exceptionally inflated is the fact that the actual bill is very low in the winter,` says another Lesco employee.

`Now, the bills make a horrendous reading: a bill of say Rs1,000 carries Rs2,000 fuel adjustment surcharge. These charges belong to the months of June and July when consumption of electricity units touches its peak. The bill-fuel charges equation is lopsided and hurting people more than anything else,` he said.

`This is sheer dishonesty on the part of the government; it has divided electricity tariff in many parts regular tariff, government duties and fuel adjustment surcharge,` said a man who participated in the protest in Defence.

`When the government talks about tariff, it only talks about regular head of tariff, which is a partial part of total charges. Taxes and fuel adjustment surcharge are exorbitant but not part of the tariff. It is what hurts consumers and hurts beyond tolerance, he said.

Dawn.com

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Wapda seeks 120pc hike in power tariff

Posted on June 23, 2011. Filed under: Pakistan, Tariff, Wapda / KESC |

ISLAMABAD, June 22: The Water and Power Development Authority (Wapda) has sought an increase of 120 per cent in its tariff for hydel power from less than Rs6 per unit at present to Rs13 from July 1 this year.

The unusually high tariff increase has been sought mainly because of induction of a small power plant — 72MW Khan Khwar Hydropower Project (KKHP) — into the system but this would have its effect on the overall cost of about 6,500MW hydropower generation by Wapda.

In its tariff petition filed before the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra), Wapda had solicited an increase of Rs7.10 per unit in variable energy cost from existing Rs5.90 per unit to Rs13 per unit.

It has sought a raise in fixed charges from Rs414 per kilowatt per month to Rs939 per kilowatt per month, up by 127 per cent.

Wapda Hydroelectric is currently operating 13 hydropower stations having installed capacity of 6,444MW. With the commissioning of 72MW KKHP in December 2010, the installed capacity has increased to 6,516MW.

On the basis of audited financial accounts for financial year 2009-10 and projected change in revenue requirement for fiscal year 2011-12, the regulator asset base of Wapda has increased from Rs143 billion to Rs214 billion due to additional capital investments on the ongoing projects.

The Wapda’s operation and maintenance cost has also increased from Rs4 billion to Rs10.63 billion, up by 166 per cent, because of repeated increases in pay and allowances and higher maintenance costs. In addition, the overall weighted average cost of capital has also increased from 13.7 per cent to 15.1 per cent owing to increase in the cost of debt.

On top of that, the depreciation cost of operating assets also increased from Rs5.4 billion to Rs6.9 billion due to addition in operating assets. The water use charges of Wapda have also increased slightly form Rs720 million in 2009-10 to Rs836 million on account of higher generation at Mangla power station.

On the other hand, income from other activities like fisheries and boating etc has dropped from Rs2.1 billion two years ago to Rs825 million.

Wapda said that its revenue gap stood at about Rs12 billion in 2009-10 and Rs12.35 billion in 2010-11 whose determination and notification was delayed.

The proposed tariff increase has been estimated on the basis of net electricity output of 30,783 Gwh that accounts for about one-fourth of the entire annual power output, including generation from all other sources.

Dawn.com

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Power riots spread after consumers receive ‘inflated’ bills

Posted on June 22, 2011. Filed under: Energy crisis, Pakistan, Tariff, Wapda / KESC |

KARACHI, June 21: While many city areas continued to remain without electricity for most part of the day, residents and traders staged demonstrations to protest against the Karachi Electric Supply Company after they received “inflated” bills on Tuesday.

Power riots spread to Jodia Bazaar, Old Golimar, Gadap, North Karachi, Korangi, Landhi, Lyari and other localities, where people blocked roads by setting tyres on fire. Contingents of police and Rangers were called in to control the crowds at some places. Street protests against frequent power breakdowns have also been planned for Friday.

Amid the demonstrations, many influential segments of society have started appealing to the people not to pay their monthly power utility bills and to resist the power utility if it launched a disconnection drive.

Several protesters complained that they had been suffering up to 14 hours of loadshedding daily and yet they received bills with power dues twice the amount they had paid last month.

Some of them said the KESC sent inflated bills without meter reading and that the management should stop blaming workers for its poor service.

People staged a protest demonstration against power outages in Jodia Bazaar and shouted slogans against the KESC management. They lit a bonfire and smashed everything inside it with great ferocity. Traders and residents of the Bolton Market and Napier Road areas also staged protests. Residents of Old Golimar and adjoining areas were equally enraged. They blocked traffic by setting fire to old tyres.

A resident of North Karachi’s Sector 7D3 was among the thousands of KESC consumers who had received inflated electricity bills on June 20. He claimed that electricity charges for one month to be paid by June 25 were three times that of the pre vious bill. “The June 2011 bill, with normal charging mode status, carrying a meter reading of 28952 as of June 1 requires me to pay Rs5,700 for consuming 557 units,” he said. In fact, the meter reading on June 21 was 28771, he added.

A visit to the recently relocated billing office of KESC North Karachi Zone on Tuesday was not productive. Half of the staff was standing outside and the rest was showing least interest in helping the consumers who had gathered there to get their bills corrected.

No senior official was sitting at the office and some officials were discouraging the visitors, saying that bill correction was not possible. The officials were quoted as saying that people should better pay the bills as Nepra had allowed 79 paisa fuel adjustment for the months of April and May and its impact would be shown in the next bill.

Online bills While the power crisis deepened with prolonged outages and unattended faults blamed by the KESC management on workers’ protest, monthly bills remained undelivered in many areas.

In this situation, the KESC management advised people who had not received monthly electricity bills around their usual time to use alternative online arrangements for payment of bills.

The KESC spokesperson said that it had introduced five easy methods for the convenience of customers besides the normal way of using printed bills. First, people could visit the utility’s official website and enter the 13-digit account number to retrieve duplicate copies of the current electricity bills, which could be printed and presented at all banks for making payment. Secondly, people could go to the offices of Nadra, NIB Bank branches, Easy Paisa outlets, UBL Omni Banking and 1Link ATMs, and present the 13-digit account number. These outlets would retrieve bill details and provide a payment receipt of the bill to the customer. Thirdly, the customers who did not receive their monthly bills, could phone the KESC call centre 118 and follow the automated system to retrieve a duplicate copy of the bill. Fourthly, people could email 13-digit account number to receive an online copy of their bill, which could be used for payment. Fifthly, people familiar with online payment could use their existing online banking services as most banks provided the facility for payment of utility bills.

Workers The protesting labour union of the KESC rejected the alternative ‘facility’ for bills payment and said the management did not assure people of enhanced power supply. The labour union asked the government and the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority to take notice of the KESC management’s high-handedness and complete apathy towards people’s problems and needs.

A few consumers whom Dawn spoke to were furious at the management’s measures saying that their major concern was resumption of normal power supply.

They said the KESC had not been recording the actual meter reading while with this move the power utility had attempted to absolve itself of delivering the bills on time.

Protest call The Jamaat-i-Islami Karachi chapter has announced that June 24 would be observed as a protest day against the increasing hours of power loadshedding and tariff hike.

A party’s handout said that power outages had affected the commercial and industrial businesses. The demonstrations would be staged on roads and at roundabouts. The main protest would be staged at Lasbela Chowk, the handout stated.

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NEPRA: Hearing on fuel charges adjustment – May 11

Posted on June 22, 2011. Filed under: DISCOs, Pakistan, Tariff, Wapda / KESC |

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KESC told to end woes of consumers

Posted on June 17, 2011. Filed under: Wapda / KESC |

KARACHI, June 16: Sindh Assembly lawmakers on Thursday urged the Karachi Electric Supply Company to end its internal problem and move to end public suffering caused by prolonged outages and unattended electricity complaints.

This call was made by about half a dozen MPAs when the house reassembled to resume a debate on the provincial budget.

The virtual collapse of the power distribution system even pushed back the burning issue of continuing violence in Karachi that claimed several lives.

The issue of KESC-workers prolonged tussle was raised by Muhammad Tahir Qureshi of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) on a point of order soon after Speaker Nisar Ahmad Khuhro called the house to order at 10.45am. He said ordinary citizens were made to pay the price of the KESC failure to settle its issues with its workers. He requested the chair to play his role in ending public suffering.

Responding to the point of order, Minister for Electric Power Shazia Marri told the house that the situation had aggravated to the extent that not only the governor and the chief minister but also the prime minister had taken notice of it and formed a committee to help end the tussle.

She said the government could not remain unconcerned as the issue was creating a law and order problem. Although the KESC was a private company, it was supposed to ensure an uninterrupted power supply to all its consumers and it was responsibility of the government to provide relief to citizens, she argued.

The minister was of the view that it was an in-house matter which the KESC could sort out within a few days. However, she added, it had been almost 45 days now that the management’s tussle with its workers had severely disrupted the power distribution system in the city.

This added to the miseries of citizens who were already enduring an extremely hot summer and were forced to take to the streets due to prolonged outages, the minister said.Izhar-ul-Hasan of the MQM said citizens of Karachi were right to criticise the KESC management for its failure to overhaul the system and enhance power generation.

Minister for Katchi Abadis Rafique Engineer advised the KESC management not to be inflexible over the issue and, instead, consider the plight of the millions of consumers who were regularly paying their electricity bills. The KESC must realise its responsibility in this regard, he added.

Speaker Nisar Khuhro agreed that it had become a serious matter as people were suffering owing to the ongoing tussle that involved the power utility and its workers.

Dawn.com

 

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Court suspends hike in power tariff

Posted on June 17, 2011. Filed under: DISCOs, Finance, Wapda / KESC |

PESHAWAR, June 16: The Peshawar High Court on Thursday suspended a recent SRO issued by the federal government for increasing power tariff for the consumers of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to the tune of Rs1.0062/KWH.

A two-member bench comprising Chief Justice Ejaz Afzal Khan and Justice Mazhar Alam Miankhel put on notice the respondents including the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra), Peshawar Electric Supply Company (Pesco), secretary ministry of water and power and others.

The bench was hearing a writ petition filed by the Human Rights Commission South Asia through its correspondent for Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Advocate Abdus Samad Marwat, challenging the recent increase in power tariff on May 17, 2011, by the ministry of water and power on the approval of Nepra.

Following preliminary hearing, the bench decided to suspend operation on the said SRO and also directed the respondents to explain how the fuel adjustment surcharge could be levied on Pesco con sumers as the province was producing electricity through hydel sources?

The petitioner claimed that through the impugned SRO the government issued a new tariff increase for Pesco consumers, which would be adjusted for the month of March 2011 in the current monthly bills of 1.7 million consumers of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

The petitioner has requested the court to hold that all the tariff determination by Nepra till date were illegal, unlawful, without jurisdiction and thus of no legal effect upon the rights of the Pesco consumers.

Mr Marwat argued before the bench that tariff determination for distribution of electricity in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa was within powers and authority of the provincial government and Nepra had no jurisdiction in this regard.

He stated that earlier a writ petition was filed by the provincial government on the same issue but it was later withdrawn against the wishes of the consumers. He requested the court to summon all the record submitted in that case.

He bench observed that in future if the need arose, the court would summon that record.

Mr Marwat argued that more than 5,000MW hydel power was generated in the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and its approximate consumption was 1,700MW. He added that keeping in view the ground realities, it was incumbent upon Nepra to supply 1,700MW and as such no loadshedding would result.

The petitioner stated that it was extremely brutal to impose upon the people of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa further increase in tariff when the province was providing hydel electricity at the rate of Rs1.01 per unit to Central Power Purchase Agency (CPPA) and buying the same at an average cost of almost Rs10 per unit from Pesco.

Mr Marwat contended that there was no Wapda thermal generation unit or IPP in the province and only the hydel generation electricity was supplied by Pesco and imposition of fuel adjustment charges on the people of this province was unjust and unconstitutional.

Dawn.com

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Power theft reporting – PEPCO…

Posted on June 16, 2011. Filed under: DISCOs, Energy crisis, PEPCO, Wapda / KESC |

Steeling of Power is crime against every Pakistani and who ever does it, is our enemy. Please help PEPCO in its effort to stop power theft by reporting at its toll free number 0800-84338. This is a free number for all calls including NTC, PTCL, Mobiles or wireless phones.

Intstructions for theft reporting:

Call the Toll free number 0800-84338

Listen the instructions carefully

After pressing 1, Record your message about event of theft

Please give maximum detail of location

After completing the message disconnect the call

http://www.pepco.gov.pk/

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Nepra delaying action against KESC: PC

Posted on June 16, 2011. Filed under: NEPRA, Wapda / KESC |

JUNE 16, 2011

WASIM IQBAL

The Privatisation Commission (PC) has accused the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) of delay in taking any action against the management of Karachi Electric Supply Company (KESC) for its poor operational performance causing long power break downs in Karachi.

An official of PC said that after lapse of three years, PC has a very limited role in operational affairs of the power utility. After privatisation, it is governed by the KESC Board and its private management and PC is no more responsible for poor performance of the utility.

He said, “An independent regulator NEPRA is primarily responsible for the operational issues of KESC which are presently soaring eg regulations, tariff and revenue determinations, and penalties on non-performance”.

The KESC is facing serious operational issues but the regulator’s parent ministry is also not playing a dominant role which can lead to a successful turnaround of the company with the efforts of existing owner and management.

The company is a commercial organisation and presently working under serious financial stress. Its profitability, existing cash flows will determine how to address employment issues under the international practices.

In the annual budget 2011-12, the government has allocated a subsidy of Rs 24.5 billion. This subsidy is payable on tariff differential. The spokesperson of KESC said the company was not facing operational issues but unionists were damaging and sabotaging the smooth supply of KESC.

Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani also chaired a meeting to look into the affairs of the KESC on Friday. The meeting decided to form a committee, comprising representatives of key stakeholders, to discuss the utility’s labour-related issues and find solution to the problems in minimum possible time.

During the meeting, the KESC management was also directed to make all out efforts to improve the power supply. Besides federal ministers, the meeting was also attended by the chairman of Nepra, the secretary of water and power and the Sindh chief secretary.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2011

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Management of three generation firms may be given to private companies

Posted on June 16, 2011. Filed under: Wapda / KESC |

Having lost up to 40 per cent of generation capacity because of mismanagement and overage, the government is considering to hand over control of Wapda’s three major generation companies to private firms on management contracts under a performance-based structure of incentives and penalties.

This is perhaps the first time in the country that the concept of management contracts is being introduced to improve bleeding public sector corporations — a major departure from previous experiments of outright sale, partial privatisations along with management controls and listings on the stock exchanges.

Based on a number of technical studies, the authorities have concluded that independent management was perhaps the only option now to resolve management and operational issues and bring about a complete change in the management approach and operational environment of the generation companies.

The three major thermal companies in Muzaffargarh, Guddu and Jamshoro, with a combined installed capacity of about 2,800MW could hardly produce 1,700MW and that too at an output efficiency of as low as 25 per cent. As a result their tariffs go out of manageable limit and hence plants are to be closed for a lot of time.

“Due to poor maintenance of the power stations, Gencos have lost nearly one-third of their capacity and nearly 17 per cent of their thermal efficiency due to plant degradation,” a senior official said, quoting a technical study. Most of the units are capable of running both on gas and oil, but were operating on oil firing due to shortage of gas.

A recent study conducted by Hagler-Bailly Pakistan with foreign assistance found that the Muzaffargarh station had lost more than 40 per cent of its generation capacity, while Jamshoro and Guddu’s capacity had come down by 32 and 31 per cent, respectively.

Some of the units have lost up to 63 per cent of their generation capacity.The management contract proposal comes from this latest study that proposed designing “terms and conditions of operation and maintenance (O&M) contracts in a manner to make the contractor responsible for injecting investments for rehabilitation of the units and bringing in highly-trained and experienced senior managers”.

The report said that based on observations of teams which conducted technical audit of the three companies, interviews with the power stations management and operation staff and review of historic records and capacity and heat rate tests conducted at the operational units, a number of reasons were identified behind the overall decline in performance.It said: “None of the samples complied with Pakistan Standard and Quality Control Authority (PSQA) specifications for residual fuel oil (RFO). High specific gravity values were obtained due to higher water contents”.

The discrete measurement of fuel supplied and energy generated and sent out for each unit of the plant was found to be inadequate.

“No credible measurement system exists for RFO received from the supplier as well as fed to the installed units from the storage facilities of the plant. The same applies to the natural gas,” said the technical audit report.

It said no uniform standards are followed for measurement of energy output.

Dawn.com

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Electricity tariff Households pay almost same rate as industry

Posted on June 14, 2011. Filed under: Wapda / KESC |

KARACHI, June 13: This could be surprising for many yet it is a fact that ordinary citizens, in stress owing to severe load-shedding, are paying a high cost of electricity as industry that is also higher than the rate agriculture sector pays.

The calculation carried out on the basis of overall prices paid by the different segments of economy, including residential consumers across the country, shows that industry enjoys subsidies like the general public but enjoys priority in supply over households and, therefore, is not as severely hit by load- shedding.

The common residential consumers are paying Rs7 per Kwh, while the industry on average pays Rs7.2 per Kwh. The agriculture sector, however, pays Rs6 per Kwh for using power for tube wells.

While the people have been crying over high electricity tariff and ever-increasing load- shedding, particularly in summer, the government is expected to further increase the tariff by 25 to 30 per cent during the next fiscal.

The government had allocated Rs74 billion for subsidy on electricity, while it provided Rs285 billon during FY 11.

This massive decline in subsidy is expected to hike prices mostly for household consumers as they are the biggest user of electricity.

For next year electricity subsidy is budgeted at Rs74 billion, including Rs50 billion for Wapda generation, while Rs24 billion for KESC.

“We believe actual subsidy in FY12 would remain higher at Rs150 billion unless international oil prices sharply reduce. Moreover, given rising electricity shortage we believe that tariff hike this time would be rationalised,” said Farhan Mahmood, researcher at Topline Securities.

Analysts believe that two per cent per month tariff increase could be introduced from next fiscal but they said the political cost of this increase could be much more than expected.

Since the largest consumers of electricity are the general people, they would pay most of the cost of price hike.

Farhan said that against the average selling rate of approximately Rs7.5 per Kwh, residential customers, who consume 45 per cent of the country’s electricity, are on average paying Rs7 per kwh.

Though no major steps were announced to arrest electricity shortage in the new budget the government looked serious to curtail its burgeoning subsidies on electricity next year in line with IMF directives, he said.

Dawn.com

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