Most homes, small businesses exempt from electricity hikes: Taipower
CNATAIPEI -- An electricity rate increase that takes effect on Oct. 1 will not affect most households or small businesses in Taiwan, according to data compiled by the state-run power company Taiwan Power Co. (Taipower).
September 30, 2013, 12:05 am TWN
In the second stage of a three-step hike devised by the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA), electricity rates will be raised by an average 8.49 percent, instead of 9.64 percent as previously planned, in an effort to cushion the impact on inflation.
Homes and businesses that consume 500 kilowatt-hours (kWh) or less of electricity per month will be exempt from the price hike, as will small businesses consuming 1,500 kWh or less per month, according to the new policy.
Taipower said there are 9.85 million homes that consume 500 kWh or less of electricity per month, accounting for 85.7 percent of all households. Meanwhile, 710,000 small businesses, or 80.2 percent of the total number, consume 1,500 kWh or less of electricity per month, the state-run power company said.
In other words, most homes and small businesses in Taiwan will not be affected by the electricity rate increase, Taipower said.
The government thinks that gradual increases in electricity rates will help pull Taipower out of the red, where it has been for a while due largely to a sharp rise in fuel costs in recent years.
Taipower suffered NT$35.2 billion (US$1.19 billion) in losses in the first seven months of this year, bringing its cumulative losses to NT$228.8 billion.
The MOEA launched the first stage of its three-phase electricity rate hike plan on June 10, 2012. The second stage was scheduled for Dec. 10 last year but was postponed to Oct. 1 of this year because of the sluggish domestic economy.