Extreme rationing of
Local market needs more than
200,000 tons of fuel derivatives
Although Electricité du Liban (EDL) has enough fuel to run its power plants for the next four months, there are questions whether electricity will be drastically rationed once those supplies run out.
Local media reported that EDL will reduce power deliveries to just eight hours per day.
Aurore Feghali, Director General of the Directorate of Oil at the Ministry of Energy and Water, said that fuel supplies for the next four months are adequate. However, she would not address media reports that there would be further power cuts.
The government subsidizes the cost of fuel which EDL uses to run its power plants. However, rising oil prices mean that the funds that the Treasury transfers to the state-run energy provider buy less fuel.
“Transfers from the Treasury to EDL are not sufficient because of rising fuel prices,” Feghali said. “The problem is with the electricity tariff. If people accept having the tariff raised, we would not have to wait for these transfers.”
The Treasury transferred $1.3 billion to EDL in 2017.
The energy charge for low voltage residential customers varies from $0.023 to $0.13 per kilowatt-hour (kWh) up to 100 kWh. EDL has not increased the tariffs since 1996, and the pricing structure is not adequate with the current prices of fuel.
EDL needs over 200,000 tons of fuel oil and gas oil to avoid having power rations, said a ministry source.
Reported by Yassmine Alieh
Date Posted: Sep 18, 2018