Average electricity prices at the Wholesale Electricity Spot Market (WESM) surged to almost Php8 per kilowatt-hour (kWh) this May due to increased demand as the economy slowly recovers, according to the Independent Electricity Market Operator of the Philippines (IEMOP).
IEMOP COO Robinson Descanzo said the estimated price for May stands at around Php7.65/kWh, significantly higher compared to the previous months. The average price for April was at Php3.85/kWh, while the last peak price was recorded in March at Php4.16/kWh.
Descanzo added that the registered peak demand was on May 20 at 13,660 megawatts (MW), which was already the all-time peak since it beat the 13,450MW previous record-high posted in June 2019.
The spike in price rates prompted IEMOP — WESM’s operator — to activate the secondary price gap, a price-mitigating mechanism to limit the increase in power rates.
IEMOP manager for pricing validation and analysis John Paul Grayda said the secondary price cap was imposed from May 4-7 and again from May 20-22. During those days, it recorded an average Php7.72/kWh in spot market prices as the average demand increased from to 11,091MW this May from 10,120MW in April.
Photo courtesy of IEMOP website.