Just four days after online classes have begun in public schools, the Manila Electric Company (MERALCO) announced an increase of Php0.12 per kilowatt hour.
MERALCO’s latest rate increase ends five straight months of reductions amounting to Php0.57/kWh.
The power firm cited the increase in electricity demand and usage behind the rate hike. Last Monday (October 5), nearly 25 million public school students took on online classes in a bid to minimise exposure to COVID-19. Online classes are expected to cause a surge in power usage and demand.
“Even the price in the spot market has gone up. The pressure is for prices to go up as well,” MERALCO spokesman Joe Zaldarriaga mentioned in an ABS-CBN news report Thursday.
MERALCO had also recognized electricity’s vital role, especially that online classes in most schools had just commenced, which is why the company would not prioritize cutting of power even with the issuance of disconnection notices to non-paying customers.