Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Tuesday gave his go-ahead to the phase-wise increase in base electricity tariffs for power consumers by Rs7.91 per unit over the next few months, reported Aaj News.
He signed a summary that was forwarded to him by the Ministry of Energy. According to it, Rs3.5 per unit increase in power tariff was to be be implemented from July 1, 2022.
An additional Rs3.5 per unit hike will come into effect from August 1. The remaining Rs0.91 per unit will be added to the bills of consumers in October.
The hike is being done to fulfil a key condition of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to revive the $6 billion bailout package. After the implementation of the summary, the base tariff for electricity consumers will rise from Rs16.91 per unit to Rs24.82 per unit.
On June 3, the National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) approved an average increase of Rs7.91 per unit in base tariffs of power distribution companies for fiscal year 2022-23, which was a prior action agreed with the IMF and World Bank.
In this regard, the regulator forwarded its notification to the government of Pakistan.
Subsequently, the Ministry of Energy sent a summary to Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif which was duly approved.
The regulator recommended the massive increase in tariffs of distribution companies at a time when citizens are facing load-shedding of 10-16 hours daily due to shortfall ranging from 7,500MW to 8,000MW as the government is unable to purchase expensive imported fuels like furnace oil, LNG and coal.
Earlier, the government of Pakistan had considered increasing the power tariff in a single move. But it later decided to implement the hike in phases from July 2022 onward.