Meralco’s Electricity Sales Increase Hints Domestic Economic Growth, Analysts

The massive impact of modern technology on the increase of electricity consumption paved the way to higher sales of the country’s largest electric distributor, Meralco. People own more gadgets and appliances today according to Metro Manila’s lone electric power company.

The increase in Meralco’s electricity sales is an indicator of domestic economic growth, according to analysts. Meralco accounts for about 55 percent of electricity sales for the whole country and 75 percent in Luzon, which is the most economically active region in the country. Meralco also holds the power distribution franchise for 22 cities and 89 municipalities.

The company’s chair Manuel V. Pangilinan was quite surprised with the outcome of their sales for 2015. He believes that the P18.5 billion core net income forecast can be reached, which is slightly higher than the P18 billion forecast. “Surprisingly, the volume of power sold has risen starting May this year such that year-to-date is about 5 percent growth which is slightly ahead of our expectations and ahead of what the historic growth rate of power sold by MERALCO has been; because it’s typically around 3 percent or so,” he said.

CEO and company President Oscar S. Reyes noted some factors that have contributed to the increase of electric consumption:

  1. Low oil prices. Motorists spend less on fuel expenses and save more to purchase electronic gadgets. For businesses, this resulted in lower transport costs and general business operations expenses that gives business owners a chance to spend more on appliances and equipment that require electricity.
  2. Low inflation and growth in the outsourcing sector. The real estate have seen an explosive growth that meant additional domestic electric consumption.
  3. Power bill management tools. One of their latest innovations is the prepaid electricity. Consumers pay in advance for their electricity consumption, which has helped save extra money for buying new home appliances.
  4. Nature. The rising heat in the metro was felt not only during summer but also in the three months that followed, which played a big role in the increase of electricity consumption. The recorded peak demand was on 18th of August this year.

“We have been averaging 3 to 3.5 percent growth in terms of power sales volume over recent years,” according to Reyes. The 2015 forecast was to hit between 5 to 5.5 percent growth year-to-date levels. “That could put us back to 3 to 3.5 percent growth next year due to base effect,” he added. This could mean lower percentage increase next year.

The company was founded in 1895. The name “Meralco is an acronym that stands for Manila Electric Railroad And Light Company. This was the company’s original name until 1919.

Source: Business Inquirer

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