Meralco reportedly willing to refund customers after ERC orders recalculation of generation costs
But an official says the recalculation may also result in customers paying more.
Leila Salaverria, Riza Olchondra and TJ Burgonio of the Philippine Daily Inquirer report that Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) has expressed its willingness to refund any excess amount to its consumers "should an order from the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) to recalculate electricity spot market prices cut the generation cost and other pass-on charges" that it had earlier collected from them.
The report quoted Meralco first vice president William S. Pamintuan as saying that while the utility firm is ready to refund its customers, the public should also be prepared to pay extra "if the recalculation resulted in an amount higher than the P5.67 per kilowatt-hour that was collected in December and January." He said Meralco will be transparent in recalculating its generation charge.
On Tuesday (March 11), the ERC issued an order voiding the prices at the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market, which led generation costs to increase in December, because these were "not reasonable, rational and competitive."
Late last year, Meralco announced it will jack up its generation cost by P4.15 per kilowatt-hour because prices at the WESM were higher after several power plants shut down for maintenance. The power utility's plan, however, was halted when the Supreme Court issued a Temporary Restraining Order against it.
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