Friday 8 December 2023

ICE President: increase in electricity will be 1% and not 10%

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Q COSTA RICA – An increase of less than 1% (0.91% to be exact) in electricity that will take effect on July 1 is confirmed by Marco Acuña, president of the Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (ICE), the State power and telecom.

Grupo ICE manager of finance Manager, Keiner Arce (left), and the executive president Marco Acuña. (Photo: Fabian Hernandez Mena)

In a press conference on the occasion of the presentation of the ICE Group Management Report, Acuña pointed out that it is always important to verify each element that the regulatory authority, the Autoridad Reguladora de los Servicios Públicos (ARESEP,) brings out because the tariff methodologies are very complex and that “It is true that there is an unfortunate increase, but it is not 10%”.

The increase Acuña explained: “For example, a family that consumes 190 kilowatt hours, which from April to June was paying ¢15,935, we expect, according to our calculations, that as of July 1, they will pay ¢16,081, which is an increase of 0.91 % in electricity rate. The difference in an invoice will be less than ¢200”.

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According to Acuña, Grupo ICE shows growth in its businesses. As of March 2023, it reported an operating surplus of ¢57 billion colones (US$10.2 million at the current dollar exchange rate), with an operating margin of 17%.

Currently, ICE is carrying out electrification projects to bring energy for the first time to clients in La Riviera de Coto (Golfito); Buenos Aires, Osa and Corridors (Puntarenas); Guarumalito and Fila El Tigre (Puriscal); Punta Burica, Puerto Jiménez-Carate and Limón (Siquirres, Barra del Colorado and Pococí), with an accumulated investment of more than ¢4 billion.

Next week, ICE’s actions will be announced in response to the El Niño phenomenon, which could result in incremental expenses in electricity generation faced with a very dry season and have to use a lot of fossil fuels and import electricity from Central America; as well as the advances linked to the development of the 5G, the fifth-generation technology standard for broadband cellular networks.

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