The Energy Ministry is assuring people that the new power tariff for households will not exceed 4.20 baht per unit, adding that it is seeking a budget to support vulnerable groups in paying their electricity bills.
Prasert Sinsukprasert, the ministry's permanent secretary, on Friday said the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) recently resolved to raise the new fuel tariff (Ft) rate to 0.8955 baht per unit for January to April next year, causing energy bills to rise by 4.68 baht per unit.
The increased Ft rate reflects a hike in fuel costs and the need to pay back some debts to the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (Egat) to maintain liquidity, he said.
Mr Prasert said the main fuel cost is natural gas. Its fluctuating prices are a consequence of the Russia-Ukraine conflict. As Russia, the world's leading natural gas exporter, is unable to export, this has affected global gas prices. In addition, there is a rising demand for natural gas in Western countries during winter.
In addition, natural gas production capacity here has been reduced due to the transitioning of a new natural gas concessionaire in the Gulf of Thailand, increasing imported fuel. The ministry expects natural gas production capacity will return to normal by April.