Halt on industries cuts down on earnings from electricity
The use of electricity in industries is expected to be low in the second quarter now that the government has extended the state of emergency until the end of May to contain the spread of Covid-19.
Wirot Buaklee, assistant governor of the Provincial Electricity Authority (PEA), said in the first two months of the year, the use of household electricity rose approximately 8 per cent year on year as people started working from home.
“However, the commercial use of power dropped by about 2 to 3 per cent year on year, and is expected to drop further from April to June,” he said, adding that the power authorities have also been instructed to waive the minimum charge for businesses and industries from April to June.
“We don’t expect earnings from the use of electricity this year to grow much because an increase in household use cannot compensate for the drop in industrial consumption.”
Meanwhile, Chaturon Suriyasin, assistant governor of the Metropolitan Electricity Authority (MEA), said revenue from electricity this year will also be in the minus figures, in line with the country’s gross domestic product (GDP).
“The Bank of Thailand recently forecast economic growth to -2 to -3 per cent, and is expected to forecast a further downward trend at -5 to -6 per cent,” he said. “Revenue from electricity will also drop similarly,” he said.
Based on the Cabinet resolution on April 21, MEA and PEA have set up ways of cutting electricity bills for households.
Households with 5amp metres will not be charged for power, while those with metres above 5amps will only be charged what they paid in February, provided their usage does not go beyond 800 units.
Households using more than 800 units but less than 3,000 units will be charged only 50 percent of the extra 2,200 units in addition to the amount they paid in February.
Households using more than 3,000 units will get a 30 percent discount on units above 3,000, then a 50 percent discounts on 2,200 units, which will added to the amount they paid in February.
The discounted rates will be applied to PEA bills from May 8, and to MEA bills from May 11.
Customers who have paid their bills at the full rate will be refunded the difference from June onwards.