Gov’t approves electricity tariff restructuring for Sabah, Labuan
Posted on July 10, 2011, Sunday
KOTA KINABALU: The government has approved the electricity tariff restructuring for Sabah and the Federal Territory of Labuan with effect from July 15.
In announcing this yesterday, Minister of Energy, Green Technology and Water Datuk Seri Peter Chin Fah Kui said the tariff restructuring was necessary to reduce the widening gap between the cost of electricity supply and tariff.
This, he added, was also to enable Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd (SESB) to provide a reliable and uninterrupted electricity supply in Sabah and Labuan.
He said the current electricity tariff in Sabah has been in existence for the past 25 years, while for Labuan, it is based on the Tenaga Nasional Bhd (TNB) electricity tariff for the industrial and commercial sectors since 1994.
“With the restructuring, the average electricity tariff rate in Sabah and Labuan will be increased by 3.75 sen/kWh or 15 per cent of the restructured tariff from 25.50 sen/kWh to 29.25 sen/kWh. This restructuring of the electricity tariff is necessary to reflect the actual cost of electricity supply and also to promote the efficient use of electricity in line with the current energy policy of the country.
“The interest of consumers was taken into account before implementing the new tariff,” Chin told reporters at Wisma SESB, here.
Also present was State Industrial Development Minister, Datuk Raymond Tan Shu Kiah.
Chin said about 75 per cent of domestic consumers, comprising 275,276 consumers in Sabah and Labuan whose consumption is in the range of 1 to 350 kWh/month, would not experience any increase in monthly bills after the new tariff rate is enforced.
“This means consumers with a monthly consumption not exceeding about RM77, will not experience any increase in their bills,” he added.
At the same time, he said the electricity rebates for domestic consumers with a monthly consumption of not exceeding RM20, would be continued until December 31, this year.
“This rebate will benefit about 70,000 consumers in Sabah and Labuan,” he said.
He said 61 per cent or 1,826 consumers from the industrial tariff category who were low voltage industrial consumers with a consumption of 1-2000 kWh would not experience any increase in monthly bills.
Chin said the peak or off-peak rates would be introduced for the first time in the state, and medium voltage commercial and industrial consumers can benefit by shifting their operations to off-peak periods, thus enabling them to enjoy savings in electricity bills.
He said there would also be a reduction of consumer connection charges of up to 50 per cent effective January, next year.
He added that the electricity tariff rate for public lighting rates in areas that were maintained by local authorities would be reduced by 47 per cent from 30 sen/kWh to 16 sen/kWh.
“Apart from that, at least a 10 per cent discount is given for approved non-profitable welfare organisations, places of worship and government education institutions with meter rental waived for all consumers,” he said.
He said the electricity supply situation in Sabah and Labuan had improved considerably in 2010 compared to previous years.
“This can be reflected in the System Average Interruption Duration Index (SAIDI) which recorded an encouraging 687 minutes per customer in 2010 compared to 2,867 minutes per consumer in the previous year.
“This shows that the SAIDI had decreased by 76 per cent for the period concerned,” he added.
Chin said the Federal government had also provided financial assistance in the form of grants or soft loans amounting to RM2.872 billion to develop the electricity infrastructure in Sabah and Labuan for the past 15 years.
He said to date, the amount of fuel subsidies given to the SESB, amounted to RM2.663 billion.
“The fuel subsidy given by the Federal government is still insufficient to enable the SESB to bear the actual cost of supply of 44.62 sen/kWh in Sabah and Labuan.
“Despite the fuel subsidy of 12.9 sen/kWh now, the SESB still suffers a loss of 6.2 sen for every unit of electricity that is sold,” he added.
Meanwhile, Tan said the Sabah government had given its views with regards to the electricity tariff restructuring to the Federal goverment, prior to the implementation.
“We thank the Federal government for taking into consideration the interest of the people, especially the low income group, and will work together with it to further improve the electricity supply in the state, he said.— Bernama