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Maldives doubles electricity fuel surcharge

Fathmath Shaahunaz
21 December 2016, MVT 16:37
STELCO building in the capital Male. MIHAARU PHOTO
Fathmath Shaahunaz
21 December 2016, MVT 16:37

State Electric Company (STELCO) doubled its electricity fuel surcharge fee, hiking electricity rates for the second time in less than a month.

Following changes to fuel surcharges in February this year, the company had been charging four laari (MVR 0.04) per unit of electricity since September 19. The rate was amended on November 16 to 12 laari (MVR 0.12) per unit due to increase in diesel prices.

According to STELCO’s website, the new surcharge implemented from December 9 is 27 laari (MVR 0.27) per unit of electricity.

The company currently purchases diesel at a rate of MVR 8.91 per litre. If the diesel rate per litre exceeds MVR 8, the energy authority had sanctioned STELCO to levy three laari from every additional 10 laari.

STELCO’s purchase of diesel had increased from MVR 7.05 per litre in February to MVR 7.50 in April and MVR 7.97 in June. If the current fuel surcharge tariffs are maintained, an additional MVR 200 will be charged from electricity bills that amount MVR 1000.

The government had reversed the tariff hike for households in January in the wake of a public outcry. The president had vowed then to further lower the electricity rates as the tariffs were still considered too high. However, there have been no slashes in electricity rates ever since.

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