BAGUIO CITY – The Benguet Electric Cooperative (BENECO) remains to be the power distribution utility that charges the cheapest generation rate from its consumers compared to similar electric cooperatives and private distribution utilities amidst the leadership impasse that it is being confronted with.
Based on a comparative data on the generating charge of power distribution utilities last December, BENECO had the cheapest power generation rate with P4.9500 per kilowatt-hour followed by the Manila Electric Cooperative with P5.5343/kwh, Central Pangasinan Electric Cooperative (CENPELCO)– P6.3211/kwh, Ilocos Sur Electric Cooperative (ISECO) – P6.8054/kwh, Ilocos Norte Electric Cooperative (INEC) – P7.8397/kwh, Mountain Province electric Cooperative (MOPRECO) – P7.9227/kwh, La Union electric Cooperative (LUELCO) – P6.6502/kwh, Kalinga-Apayao electric Cooperative (KAELCO) – P6.3779/kwh, Ifugao Electric Cooperative (IFELCO) – P5.7118/kwh, Pangasinan Electric Cooperative (PANELCO I) – P6.6769/kwh, PANELCO III – P6.8069/kwh and Abra Electric Cooperative (ABRECO) – P7.1246/kwh.
Statistics showed that the difference of the generation charges for Region I and Cordillera Eclectic cooperative ranges from around P0.80 – P3/kwh.
Earlier, BENECO was able to grapple with the surging prices of coal in the world market because of the increasing demand when businesses started to resume their operations following the implementation of lockdowns worldwide to contend with the rapid spread of the dreaded Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) in early 2020 up to the later part of the year.
Generation charges of power distribution utilities from their consumers started to increase when the coal prices in the world market went up early in 2021.
However, BENECO was able to stabilize its generation cost despite the increasing fuel cost through the conduct of consultations and negotiations with its power supplier, the Sual-based TEAM Energy Corporation.
Further, BENECO was able to maintain its cheapest generation cost amidst the fact that it continues to provide power to numerous non-viable areas within its franchise area unlike other power distribution utilities whose area of jurisdiction are easier to access.
BENECO is a multi-awarded electric cooperative having gained prestigious awards in the field of power distribution over the past several years primarily because of its ability to sustain its single-digit systems loss among others aspects of the power distribution industry besting other bigger private power distribution utilities and electric cooperatives from the different parts of the country.
BENECO is one of the few electric cooperatives that was able to get a Class AAA standing despite the fact that it is mandated to provide power to non-viable areas within its franchise area pursuant to the mandate of the government’s rural electrification program to ensure that people in the countryside will have access to quality and cheap power supply. BENECO has a 50-year franchise that is expected to expire in 2028 and the same is now the subject of possible renewal to ensure the sustained implementation of the rural electrification program and for consumers to enjoy having cheap and quality power from the power distribution utility that is among the best in the country.