Electricity prices drop marginally in February

Kenya Power workers carry out repair works along Haile Selassie Road, Mombasa. FILE PHOTO | KEVIN ODIT | NMG

Domestic electricity bills fell 2.9 percent to Sh25.63 per kilowatt-hour in the second month of the year from Sh26.39 in January on reduced variable charges such as the fuel cost charge (FCC), value added tax (VAT) and the foreign exchange fluctuation adjustment (FERFA).

An analysis of power bills by the Business Daily shows those consuming 50 kilowatts per hour (kWh) are paying Sh1,281.4, down from Sh1,319.61 in January.

Consumers are paying Sh2,562.9 this month from Sh2,639.22 last month for 100kWh.

Households are paying Sh3,844.3 from Sh3,958.8 in January for 150kWh worth of consumption. For 200kWh, consumers are coughing up Sh5,125.8 this month, a decline from Sh5,278.44 last month.

The cost of electricity has fluctuated for six months in a row on the back of high oil prices and a weak shilling since the new administration took over.

In September, after the elections, the cost of power was a high of Sh25.2 per kWh, followed by Sh25.67 per kWh in October; November was Sh24.74 per kWh and December at Sh26.29 per kWh.

January saw Kenyans pay the most expensive domestic bills at Sh26.39 per kWh, adding to the burden of the high cost of living as people were saddled with unemployment and high inflation.

Kenya's inflation dipped to nine percent year-on-year in January, down from 9.1 percent a month earlier, easing for the third month in a row on lower food and fuel prices.

The FCC, FERFA and VAT variables decreased by 8.9 percent, 4.3 percent and 2.9 percent last month.

The foreign exchange effect fell to Sh1.85 per kWh from Sh1.93 per kWh in the period under review.

FCC in February was recorded as Sh7.18 per kWh down from Sh6.59 per kWh last month.

A decline in the fuel surcharge decreases the cost of power by increasing the number of units bought.

The value-added tax also fell to Sh3.07 per kWh from Sh3.16 per kWh the month before.

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Note: The results are not exact but very close to the actual.