Electricity prices to rise

Consumers of power in Samoa can expect another increase in their electricity bills from next month according to the state-owned power supplier, the Electric Power Corporation. 

The Government-owned power utility company E.P.C. announced its plan to raise tariffs in a post on its official Facebook page on Friday. 

The new electricity rates have been approved by the Office of the Regulator and will be effective June 1, reads the E.P.C. social media statement. 

The notice on the change in its tariff per unit of electricity is due to energy charge monthly changes and "reinstatement of the 0.10 sene provided for the COVID-19 stimulus package."

Last year, the previous Government announced its COVID-19 stimulus package in 2020 which included a $0.10 sene reduction in the cost of electricity, which was an intervention that acknowledged Samoans’ financial hardships.

Furthermore, domestic consumers using cash power will pay $0.60 per unit for 1-50 kilowatts and $0.74 per unit for 51 kilowatts and over, added the E.P.C. social media statement. 

Non-domestic consumers using cash power will be charged at a rate of $0.74 for all units. However, postpaid (induction) meter users for domestic will be charged $0.74 for all units.

Whereas the non-domestic consumers for postpaid will be charged $0.79 for all units.

Attempts by the Samoa Observer to seek a comment from the E.P.C. General Manager, Faumui Iese Toimoana on the new plan to raise the tariff were unsuccessful. 

For this year, the increase in electricity prices began in April 2021. 

In a previous interview, Faumui has said that part of the increase in electricity prices was a result of the continuous increase in fuel prices.

He explained that while fuel prices have increased in previous months, the E.P.C. has tried to maintain electricity prices at an affordable rate for consumers until now. 

But global oil prices have surged in recent months after dropping steeply in the wake of the global pandemic. 

So far, the E.P.C. has around 40,000 consumers of electricity in Samoa however, Faumui said that while they have been receiving more applications for new consumers, the demand for electricity has decreased.   

He also said that as of February this year, electricity has been produced from 52 per cent of renewable energy sources while 48 per cent is from fossil fuel.

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