Electricity rates on new basis

The Power and Energy Ministry is to propose a new tariff structure on electricity charges depending on the purpose of use.

The move is aimed at overcoming the current disparity in payments by users and reduce losses of the Ceylon Electricity Board, Minister Champika Ranawaka told the Sunday Times. The move comes as the CEB’s losses exceeded Rs. 150 million a day with the sharp drop in hydro power generation as the water levels in reservoirs were decreasing.

Mr. Ranawaka said the proposals would be submitted to the Public Utilities Commission which decides on tariffs. “The situation is similar to that of use of fuel where a three-wheeler pays the same rate for fuel compared to the fuel used for a luxury vehicle,” he said.

He said that the Ministry was also looking at a series of other energy conservation methods to curb power consumption and among them would be the introduction of a ‘Smart Grid’ where charges would depend on the time of usage.

“We have already introduced this to institutions like the Water Board. If they use electricity to pump water later in the night during off peak hours the charges will be less,” he said.

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