Higher electric bills for the poorest following energy ‘reform’









Damascus citySeptember 1, 2015http://syriadirect.org/news/syria-direct-news-update-9-1-15/The Syrian Ministry of Electricity announced the “reform of the residential electricity pricing” system on Monday in which the previous eight-tiered billing system would fold households using the least amount of electricity into one more expensive tier, doubling the power bills for the poorest Syrians. The new reform eliminates the bottom two tiers, lumping together all households that use between one and 400 kilowatts per hour on average into the same price bracket with a cost of 50 cents per kilowatt consumed. The eight tiers will be reduced to a six-tiered system, thereby doubling the price of electricity for households that use the least amount, reported the official Syrian Baath Party daily A-Thawra. The multi-tiered system divides residential electricity users into price brackets based on the amount of kilowatts per hour the household consumes on average over a two-month billing period. The government denied it was raising prices in a post Monday on the Syrian Ministry of Electricity’s official Facebook page: “This measure is not classified as a price hike, but rather is merely a reform of the tier system for household consumption of electricity.” Facebook users voiced their anger over the measure by commenting on the Syrian Ministry of Electricity’s post. “There isn’t any point in raising prices given there hasn’t been any electricity in the first place…where do you get the nerve to talk about prices?” asked one commenter. Another wrote: “Ok, no problem. In the one hour out of the every 30 hours [that I have electricity], I am going to use all the appliances is my house, whether I need to or not, to see what my consumption will be… what a joke.”
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The Syrian Ministry of Electricity announced the “reform of the residential electricity pricing” system on Monday in which the previous eight-tiered billing system would fold households using the least amount of electricity into one more expensive tier, doubling the power bills for the poorest Syrians. The new reform eliminates the bottom two tiers, lumping together all households that use between one and 400 kilowatts per hour on average into the same price bracket with a cost of 50 cents per kilowatt consumed. The eight tiers will be reduced to a six-tiered system, thereby doubling the price of electricity for households that use the least amount, reported the official Syrian Baath Party daily A-Thawra. The multi-tiered system divides residential electricity users into price brackets based on the amount of kilowatts per hour the household consumes on average over a two-month billing period. The government denied it was raising prices in a post Monday on the Syrian Ministry of Electricity’s official Facebook page: “This measure is not classified as a price hike, but rather is merely a reform of the tier system for household consumption of electricity.” Facebook users voiced their anger over the measure by commenting on the Syrian Ministry of Electricity’s post. “There isn’t any point in raising prices given there hasn’t been any electricity in the first place…where do you get the nerve to talk about prices?” asked one commenter. Another wrote: “Ok, no problem. In the one hour out of the every 30 hours [that I have electricity], I am going to use all the appliances is my house, whether I need to or not, to see what my consumption will be… what a joke.”