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ERC Keeps Electricity Tariffs Unchanged Through Summer

In a move that underscores its commitment to energy stability and consumer interests, the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) has declared that electricity tariffs will remain unchanged for the forthcoming May to August billing period. This decision caps the fuel tariff (FT) at 39.72 satang per unit, anchoring the overall electricity rates at an average of 4.1805 baht per unit, exclusive of Value Added Tax (VAT). The announcement was made by Komkrit Tantravanich, the ERC Secretary-General, marking a critical decision aimed at managing the economic impact on consumers while addressing the seasonal surge in energy demand.

This determination follows a comprehensive online public consultation process that ran from March 8th to March 22nd, gathering a total of 147 public inputs concerning the FT’s adjustment. Such consultations are indicative of the ERC’s approach to inclusive decision-making, especially during periods of heightened electricity consumption traditionally observed during the dry season. With the anticipation of increased demand, there has been a highlighted need for augmented imports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to ensure sufficient electricity generation capacity.

Acknowledging the imminent summer season and the trend of escalating electricity usage, Secretary-General Tantravanich has issued a call to action for consumers to adopt energy conservation measures. Recommended practices include regular maintenance checks on electrical appliances, like refrigerators and air conditioners, to ensure optimal performance, judicious use of lighting, adjusting air conditioning to a moderate 26 degrees Celsius, and the conscientious disconnection of devices when not in use. These steps, alongside the encouragement to switch to energy-efficient appliances, form part of a broader strategy to promote sustainable energy use among consumers.

The ERC has also delineated a fiscal strategy aimed at addressing the accumulated debt of 99,689 million baht, proposing a phased repayment over approximately seven cycles, or 14,000 million baht per cycle, in alignment with suggestions from the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT). This financial maneuver is designed to mitigate the cost pressures on the electricity supply chain and, by extension, on end consumers.

In a further bid to curtail energy consumption and reduce reliance on imported LNG, the ERC advocates for the implementation of straightforward energy-saving behaviors, encapsulated in the “5 P’s”: unplug, turn off, adjust, switch, and plant. These actions are expected to contribute significantly to the reduction of peak electricity demand and to offer relief from the economic pressures of electricity expenses for households.

This announcement comes amidst a concerted effort by regulatory bodies and energy providers to navigate the challenges of energy demand and supply, economic sustainability, and environmental stewardship. The ERC, under the guidance of Secretary-General Komkrit Tantravanich and in coordination with entities like EGAT, continues to lead the charge in securing a balanced and pragmatic approach to energy regulation and consumption in Thailand.

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