Bahrain: plan to further increase difference paid by locals v expats for electricity rejected

Plans to slash domestic electricity charges for Bahrainis by a third and pass the burden onto expatriates and the private sector were vetoed by the Shura Council last night. Parliament in May approved reducing the electricity tariff for Bahrainis from three fils to two fils per unit, despite government warnings that it would undermine a national austerity drive.

MPs’ amendments to the 1996 Electricity and Water Law would have seen one fil added to the annual increase in electricity charges for businesses and expats over four years, meaning they would end up paying 33 fils per unit by 2019–with Bahrainis paying just two fils per unit for the same service.

The government in March last year increased electricity rates for expats in the private sector, in a move which will eventually see the cost gradually rising to 29 fils per unit by 2019. The new power rates already being implemented are expected to save the government BD290 million over four years, while new water rates for expats and the private sector will save BD145.4m.

Source Credit: Gulf Daily News

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