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NEPRA approves massive increase in power tariff

Pakistanis facing inflation woes were dealt another blow as the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA) announced a significant increase in power tariffs. The newly approved hike of Rs 3.32 per unit will directly impact household and business budgets, exacerbating financial strain on consumers already grappling with rising costs of essential goods.

The adjustment aims to account for fluctuations in fuel prices, which directly influence electricity generation costs. However, the timing of this increase adds pressure to consumers amidst already challenging economic conditions marked by inflationary pressures.

NEPRA’s decision, detailed in its notification, specifies the mechanics of the rate adjustment, which will be reflected in forthcoming electricity bills. The regulatory body periodically reviews and adjusts tariffs based on factors such as changes in fuel costs.

Earlier, the federal cabinet had sanctioned a substantial rise in the basic power tariff by PKR 5.72 per unit, forwarded to NEPRA for uniform implementation starting July 1, 2024, for the fiscal year 2024-2025. This move aims to address financial deficits within the power sector, underscored by NEPRA’s report of a significant PKR 403 billion loss in the sector during the fiscal year 2022-2023, attributed to operational inefficiencies and low recovery rates from power distribution companies.

NEPRA’s recent announcement of nearly a 20% increase in the national tariff is part of broader efforts to secure funding for electricity distribution companies, aiming to generate additional revenue and support fiscal stability initiatives, including an anticipated IMF bailout scheduled for July.

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