Consumers spared power price hike

Main Stories, National

The National, Tuesday 21st May 2013

 STATE Enterprises Minister Ben Micah has asked PNG Power Ltd not to pass the third quarter tariff increase to people. 

He made the request at a press conference yesterday attended by PNGPL chairman Joshua Bakirie and acting chief executive John Tangit.

 “PNG Power Ltd has made submissions to Independent Consumer and Competition Commission (ICCC) to raise the tariff,” Micah said.

“ICCC has given them the green light to raise the tariff. There have already been some small increases in the first and second quarters.

“I have sat down and discussed with the board chairman and top management of PNG Power and  we have reached an agreement in consultation with the prime minister that starting from the third quarter, the tariff increases for power will have to be deferred, so that PNG Power can absorb the costs of the increases internally.

“It will mean that the company will have to do some cost-saving measures.

“The company will have to build internal processes for creating efficiency for the company to absorb the costs of the increases internally.”

Micah leaves on a three-day reconnaissance trip to Indonesia to prepare for a State visit next month by Prime Minister Peter O’Neill.

Tangit said he would announce reduced tariffs at a later date.

He said PNGPL could become more efficient through creation of more hydro power, collection of bad debts, and better training packages.