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There will be no increments in electricity tariffs till study completes, Energy Minister

The Ministry of Energy has assured that there will be no increments in electricity tariffs and connection fees until the electricity cost of service study which is currently undergoing peer review is ready in two months’ time.

Minister responsible Peter Kapala however says that this position does not stop the Energy Regulations Board from proceeding to look at Zesco’s latest application to revise connection fees for Standard Connections related to three customer categories as is required under the laws governing the sector.

Mr. Kapala said that after Zesco’s failed attempt to hike tariffs earlier this year, the company has made the latest application and ERB has since asked for comments as advertised but has emphasised that it is his government’s policy and plan that there will be no increment in tariffs and connection fees until the Cost of Service Study report is out.

In its latest application, Zesco indicated that it has had challenges to promptly connect new applications for electricity resulting in a backlog in new connections of 67,000 as at 31st December 2021.

This was attributed to lack of cost reflective fees for connections, which, according to Zesco are up to 10 times below the actual cost of connection in some cases. The proposed increase in power connection fees is over 300 percent in some cases.