Muscat: The Authority of Public Services Regulation (APSR) announced that there will be no power cuts during the summer months. Also, there has been a significant increase in the electricity bill amounts, an APSR official stated at a press conference after reviewing the bills. The number of complaints received by the authority due to high electricity bills ranged from 5,000 to 7,000.
APSR directed the licensed distribution companies to suspend service cuts during the summer months and provide solutions for paying the bills in installments for May and June.
The authority added: "The Public Services Regulatory Authority is conducting a comprehensive evaluation of the programme to redirect subsidy to the electricity sector in coordination with the relevant authorities, and the evaluation concluded that some amendments should be made to the current tariff structure."
The amendments consisted of increasing the number of units in these segments, the first from 0-4,000 kWh, the second from 4,001-6,000 kWh and the third to more than 6,000 kWh for the first two accounts, for the citizen's residential category.
The amendment also aims to preserve the approved gradual mechanism, not increase the tariff in the current summer months and recalculate the consumption for May and June based on the new approved segments.
The authority is currently evaluating some other tariffs related to economic and agricultural activities to ensure their compatibility with the current conditions, in addition to periodically reviewing the performance of the electricity sector to ensure its efficiency and the achievement of the subsidy redirection programme for its set objectives, stressing its constant keenness to put in place regulatory frameworks that would improve the service.
This measure is a translation of the government’s keenness to ensure the success of the programme to redirect support to the electricity and water sectors in the eligible categories, which was approved within the medium-term fiscal balance plan (2020-2024), announced in December 2020.