CEB’s new 22% tariff hike embroils in data wrangle with PUCSL
By: Staff Writer
Colombo (LNW): Ceylon Electricity Board’s proposed 22 percent tariff hike is likely to be further delayed due to its misleading data on operational cost and power generation assumptions submitted to the Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka (PUCSL ) recently.
The Public Utilities Commission has informed the CEB to submit a revised tariff submission considering the latest available data before Wednesday (18) due to certain deviations in the assumptions made by CEB in its tariff revision submissions.
In a letter addressed to the CEB’s General Manager, the Director General of the PUCSL states that with regard to the increase in demand, the CEB has forecasted demand of 44.70 GWh/day for September 2023 and 42.88 GWh/day on average for Oct-Dec 2023.
However, actual generation demand of September 2023 is 41.01 GWh/day and October 2023 is 41.30 GWh/day, he claimed
“Therefore, assumed demand in your proposal can not be substantiated with latest data,” he informed.
Regarding hydropower generation decline , the CEB forecasted a starting hydro storage for October 2023 of 503 GWh and for November 2023 635 GWh.
As at today hydro storage is 668 GWh, and Inflow for Oct 1 to Oct 12, 2023 is 314 GWh which exceeds the estimates by considerable margin, he emphasized.
The PUCSL further noted that for Oct-Dec 2023, the CEB has forecasted a total coal dispatch of 1,444 GWh in May 15, 2023 submission and 1,334 GWh in Sep 4, 2023 submission.
However, the Commission says it envisages a drop in demand higher than the drop of coal dispatch.
Further coal price has dropped from 68.6 LKR/kg in May 15, 2023 submission to 52.6 LKR/kg in Sep 4, 2023 submission. The impact of coal dispatch reduction cannot be justified with latest data, the letter indicated.
Therefore, the CEB has been informed to submit a revised tariff submission considering the latest available data before October 18, 2023.
Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) ‘s revenue has come down during the past three months as a result of power consumption drop following the proposal to impose another 22 percent electricity tariff hike ,official data indicated.
According to CEB monthly financial statements the income of the power utility in the months of July, August and September in 2023 has dropped by Rs 4573 billion.
CEB revenue of Rs. 55,163 million in July has dropped to Rs 53, 193 in August and it has further come down to Rs 50, 590 million in September.
Under this circumstance the the board has no option other than an impose a 22 percent traif hike or levy Rs 8 from each and every slab of electricity bill payment of consumers, senior engineer of CEB Nandika Pathirage said.