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Usage guides power pay surge

KUWAIT CITY, May 11: The government took a giant stride towards rationalising the issue of subsidized water and electricity services after concluding the study to increase consumption fees, in line with the new categorization system that will be applied on both Kuwaitis and non- Kuwaitis.

A source informed the increasing water and electricity charges requires a law from the National Assembly, while differentiating between citizens and expatriates with regard to water and electricity services is impossible. He explained the government will apply the increase in the billing system, while the Council of Ministers will issue a decision to include allowance for water and electricity in the salaries of Kuwaitis. He disclosed the government has valid reasons for raising the fees, considering the huge cost which the government bears in subsidizing the services.

He said the subsidy is the highest, according to the World Bank, such that the country pays 38 fils per kilowatt which could even increase to 50 fils per kilowatt. He stated the price of electricity for consumers has been the same since 1966 at two fils per kilowatt, so it is only a matter of time to give way to a new pricing scheme. He explained the need to avoid heavy burden on low-income earners was the reason for the delayed reviews until this time. He expressed confidence that the National Assembly will support the government’s idea to limit expenditures and minimize wastage.

He added the preliminary review led to the division of consumers into seven categories based on the level of consumption.

The first category that consumes less than 50 kilowatts per month will pay two fils per kilowatt, the second that consumes between 50-100 kilowatts will pay five fils per kilowatt, the third consuming between 100-200 kilowatts will be billed at the rate of 10 fils per kilowatt, the fourth that consumes between 200-1,000 kilowatts will be billed for 11-25 fils per kilowatt, the fifth which consumes between 1,000-2,000 kilowatts will pay 26-30 fils per kilowatt, the sixth consuming between 2,000-3,000 kilowatts per month for 38 fils per kilowatt (which is equal to the cost price) and the seventh consuming over 3,000 kilowatts per month will be charged 50 fils per kilowatt.

Following is the table showing the billing categories based on average consumption:

Category Price per kilowatt     Average monthly      kilowatt consumption
First                                                 2 fils                             Less than 50
Second                                           5 fils                             50-100
Third                                               10 fils                            100-200
Fourth                                            11-25 fils                        200-1,000
Fifth                                                 26-30 fils                       1,000-2,000
Sixth                                               38 fils                              2,000-3,000
Seventh                                         50 fils                             Above 3,000

By: Raed Yousef and Nasser Al-Qadeh Al-Seyassah Staff

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