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Pain for hustlers as power prices set to hike

Kenya Power is seeking Epra approval to increase tariff from April 1

Kenya Power has set in motion a far-reaching electricity tariffs review that will see hustlers who consume less than 30 units a month pay their bills through the nose.

The listed utility firm is seeking the approval of the energy regulator to increase the cost of a unit of power for the usage of fewer than 30 kilowatts(kWh)) per month to Sh28.01 a unit.

Consumers under this tariff band will pay 35.3 per cent more than the current Sh20.70 for every unit of power.

Power

image source:the-star

Those consuming 50-kilowatt a month will pay Sh36.92 a unit from the current Sh20.70, representing a 78.3 percent jump in electricity costs for households.

Kenya Power has also reduced the threshold for accessing the monthly power subsidy equivalent to a 24.1 percent discount from 100 kilowatt hours to the proposed 30 units.

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This means that households that consume more than 30 units a month will not be entitled to the subsidy they have enjoyed since 2018.

This will make their power bills goes up.

Should the Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (EPRA), approve Kenya Power’s proposals, then more homes will likely unplug gadgets like fridges, TV, cookers, microwaves and electric heaters.

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“There is a proposal to revise the Life-Line (subsidy) consumption band for both small commercial and domestic customers from the current 100kWh/month to 30kWh/month,” Kenya Power said.

“This will align the objectives of the lifeline/social tariff customer category with the correct social class normally defined by the level of income.”

Kenya Power has insisted that the move is meant to ensure as many poor households, which consume less than 30 units a month, enjoy the subsidy.

The proposed tariffs which will apply from April 1 after Epra’s approval, will hurt household budgets and raise the already high cost of doing business in Kenya.

Kenya Power holds that the higher tariffs are justified because the present electricity prices lapsed in 2019.

In 2018, Epra reduced the retail prices of electricity following former President Uhuru Kenyatta’s order.

There are concerns that the proposed increase will hurt businesses given that electricity is a key determinant for new investments.

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