Electricity prices unchanged for February
The February electricity rates remain the same as of 1 January, as the Electric Power Corporation (E.P.C.) strives to make it more affordable for consumers.
This was confirmed by the E.P.C. General Manager, Faumui Iese Toimoana, in an interview with Samoa Observer.
The February electricity tariff rates have been approved by the Office of the Regulator.
Domestic consumers using cash power will pay $0.41 per unit for 1-50 kilowatts and $0.55 per unit for 51 kilowatts and over.
According to Faumui, there are a number of contributing factors that determine the change in the electricity tariff such as: fuel cost; increase in electricity production from our renewable sources especially from our hydro plants (less expenses on diesel purchases); and efficient operation (low expenses on the operation and maintenance services).
“The credit for electricity prices remaining the same is due to the enormous contribution from our renewable sources compared to the fossil fuels,” he told the Samoa Observer.
Despite, the increase in fuel prices for December 2020, Faumui said the E.P.C. had managed to stay on top of energy charges thanks to the increasing contributions to the power grid from renewable energy sources to the power grid, which led to another drop in electricity prices.
The E.P.C. Chief also emphasised that the aim of their Corporation is to try and make the cost of electricity for the people of Samoa more affordable.
“To date, E.P.C. has around 40,000 consumers of electricity in Samoa,” he said.
While Samoa remains under bad weather conditions, the E.P.C. Chief is concerned but also added that they are trying their best to provide the best services amidst the cyclone season.
“I know that there will be challenges faced in our line of work especially with electricity disruption around the times of natural disasters but we are trying our best," the C.E.O. said.
He also referred to their Fuluasou hydropower plant which was damaged from recent flooding.
“We are trying to be more resilient during these situations," he said.
“For the month of December 2020, renewable sources in Upolu Island produced around 54 per cent of electricity.”
Faumui also stressed that it is also important to keep in mind that the Government’s COVID-19 stimulus package in 2020 included a $0.10 sene reduction in the cost of electricity and in acknowledgement of the financial hardships caused by the coronavirus state of emergency.