Consumption-based power tariff | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, June 29, 2012 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, June 29, 2012

Consumption-based power tariff

World Bank's observation that subsidy on power helps the better off people and not people in rural areas, who are much poorer, is a fact. The fact is that DESCO rates for electricity in Dhaka, where most of the well-to-do people live, is lower than REB which supplies power to rural areas!
Farmers who irrigate their land to grow rice have to pay more for pumping water than the rich power users in Dhaka city! For irrigation in rural areas, it should be cheapest. Also for residences, rural power tariff should be lower than in cities. For city usage, consumption based tariff could be used for residential use.
Commercial tariff should also be consumption related. Higher for cinemas, theatres and big restaurants and top hotels, car and other high-end showrooms; compared to markets, where at most two lights and a fan may normally be run for at most six to ten hours daily!
Similarly, power tariff for cottage industries should be lower than large factory consumption producing industrial or commercial items. A power loom weaver should be charged less than a textile mill producing high quality clothes.
If we fix power tariff on such rational basis, then may be we can provide rural users with cheaper power than well-to-do city dwellers; where a big rich household consumes more than double the power for comfort and luxuries rather than for living and resting. This could bring some relief to lower income group of people.

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