ISLAMABAD: National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (Nepra) has rejected a request to review Fuel Price Adjustment (FCA) mechanism of over 100 industrial units of KP province.
The petitioners have challenged the fuel price adjustment determined by Nepra, which is included in their electricity bills. The petitioners in writ petition stated that Nepra had failed to properly evaluate the fuel cost, it has no jurisdiction to make the said adjustment with retrospective effect and the adjustment on monthly basis is illegal as the fuel cost can be claimed by the power generation companies at the time of determination of their tariff; therefore, it should be set aside.
Peshawar High Court (PHC) disposed-off these writ petitions on February 10, 2022 and decided that “this court being a constitutional court has neither any such expertise nor can make probe in the said matter.
Although the petitioners have challenged the said determination/ fuel adjustment/ quarter tariff adjustment on various legal grounds; however, for effective determination of these issues, the appropriate forum is Nepra under section 7(2) (g) and section 3(1) of the Act, the Nepra has the authority to review its order. Since the present petitioners had not approached Nepra in this regard; therefore, we would transmit this petition, as well as, the connected petitions to NEPRA for its decision after hearing the parties.”
Accordingly, the interim relief already granted stands vacated and the office is directed to transmit all these petitions to Nepra and retain its photocopies for the purpose of record. Nepra is expected to decide all these petitions within fifteen days positively after receipt of judgment of this Court.
As per the directions of Peshawar High Court, opportunity of hearing was provided to all the petitioners, TESCO and PESCO; therefore, necessary particulars of the petitioners were obtained for the purposes of issuance of notices and thereafter, April 12, 2022 was fixed for hearing.
During the hearing, the learned council for the petitioner did not raise any concerns on the mechanism or calculation of the fuel price adjustment, rather raised concerns on the placement of its meter, which as per the petitioner is not installed on the premises of the consumer.
The authority observed that the Power Purchase Price (PPP) is a pass through cost for DISCOs, thus, any variation therein needs to be passed on to the consumers in a timely manner in order to ensure financial viability of the sector, which otherwise would result in piling up of legitimate costs.
On the point of the petitioner that Nepra had failed to properly evaluate the fuel cost, the regulator has apprised that at the time of determination of tariff of each DISCO, the Authority makes specific issue regarding reference Power Purchase Price (PPP) to be included in the tariff of each DISCO, and comments/ intervention requests are invited.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2022