Large commercial and industrial consumers stand to benefit the most, and household consumers the least, from the planned introduction of a new electricity pricing system by the state power company.
The Electricity Authority of Cyprus (ESC) intends to overhaul its tariffs system, based on a recently completed study.
Currently the EAC has some 30 different rates for electricity consumption, depending on the type of premises (residence, factory) and use of electricity; it plans to reduce the number of rates to just 11.
During a news conference on Thursday, the EAC said that with the new method small consumers would see a hike in their bills.
By way of example, households consuming up to 100 kilowatt hours over a two-month period would end up paying an estimated 22 per cent more than they do today.
Conversely, households regularly consuming between 500 and 2000 kilowatt hours can expect to save anywhere from 0.4 per cent to 8 per cent.
For instance, a household with an average electricity consumption of 560 kilowatt hours would save around 1 per cent.
That is because the current staggered rates for consumption will be scrapped, and a flat rate will apply irrespective of total consumption over the billing period.
Under the EAC’s current pricing policy, households consuming up to 120 kilowatt hours are charged 13.71 cents per kWh; for 121 to 320 kilowatt hours consumed, the rate is higher, 14.53 cents per kWh.
Meantime under the new system being mulled, small commercial consumers (for example shopkeepers) can expect to save from 10.6 per cent to 23 per cent, the EAC said.
The lower the consumption, the greater the savings. For example, a small commercial consumer burning 100 kilowatt hours would save around 23 per cent on their bill; those using 4,000 kilowatt hours would save about 10.6 per cent.
The EAC said also that with the advent of natural gas, any decline in the cost of production would be passed onto consumers.
For the proposed new pricing policy, the EAC has initiated a public consultation process which will last until November 27.