Managing Director of the State Electric Company (STELCO), Ahmed Shareef, revealed that discussions are in progress to implement a flat rate for electricity bills as announced by President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih. This change could potentially be introduced as early as January.
Shareef addressed the President’s commitment to change the electricity billing system during an appearance on the “Fala Suruhee” show on Raajje TV. He shared that the goal is to implement this new billing structure within the first two or three months of President Solih’s second term.
The transition to flat-rate billing involves extensive discussions with the government and other relevant agencies, as it will impact STELCO’s revenue significantly. Research is being conducted to determine the extent to which income can be reduced while ensuring financial sustainability.
Key points from Shareef’s statements include:
- Discussions are ongoing with government authorities to establish the tariff rate.
- The new billing system aims to replace the existing seven-band categorization.
- STELCO currently uses a tiered system, with prices ranging from MVR 1.50 to MVR 3.55 per unit based on consumption.
- A shift to flat-rate billing could reduce bills by 31% to 52%, depending on the fixed rate.
Shareef emphasized the importance of this policy change, applauding President Solih’s courage and compassion towards the public. He explained that shifting to flat-rate billing would simplify the billing process and ensure more equitable charges for all customers.
STELCO serves 77,275 customers, with 60,509 being households. Approximately 40% of these customers consume below 500 units on average, contributing to their lower electricity bills. The implementation of a flat rate is expected to provide relief to many households while promoting more responsible energy consumption.
This potential transformation in electricity billing marks a significant policy decision with the aim of enhancing the affordability and accessibility of electricity for the Maldivian population.