NICCM calls for alternative policy measures following tariff hike

THE government’s plans to increase electricity tariff surcharge for medium and high voltage users from 3.7 sen per kilowatt-hour (kWh) to 20 sen/kWh for a six months period from Jan 1 have had a significant impact on the operating costs and competitiveness of these industries, said National Chamber of Commerce and Industry Malaysia (NCCIM).

NCCIM said the tariff hike has raised concerns among affected industries and businesses, which are already facing challenging economic conditions and uncertain market prospects.

The NCCIM advocates for a transparent, predictable and equitable regulatory framework that balances the interests of all parties while promoting the sector’s competitiveness and sustainability.

“The government should also consider alternative policy measures that can help the industry and its customers, while also addressing the government’s fiscal challenges and promoting energy efficiency, innovation and sustainability,” NCCIM president Tan Sri Datuk Soh Thian Lai (picture) said in a statement yesterday.

Soh said that one of the alternatives could be implementing a phased and gradual increase of the electricity tariff surcharge, thus, allowing industries and businesses to adjust and plan their operations and investments.

Another policy, he said, is to provide exemptions or subsidies for industries and businesses that are important for the country’s economy and social wellbeing, such as those that create high-value jobs or contribute to environmental sustainability.

He also called for a policy in promoting energy efficiency and innovation by providing incentives and support to industries and businesses that implement best practices in energy management, technology and research and development (R&D).

Another approach he said is for developing alternative energy sources and solutions, such as renewable energy and energy storage, to reduce overall energy costs for industries and businesses.

Lastly, he said there should be a blueprint for holding stakeholder consultations and dialogues to hear the concerns and aspirations of affected industries and businesses and to find mutually beneficial and long-term solutions for the energy sector and the economy as a whole. 

Soh said the NCCIM and its stakeholders are committed to collaborating with the government and regulators to find solutions that ensure electricity supply stability and affordability, while also promoting energy efficiency, innovation and sustainability.

“We believe that the energy sector should not only meet the country’s and its people’s financial and technical needs, but also their social and environmental responsibilities. 

“The NCCIM also requests more dialogue and consultation on the electricity tariff surcharge and its implications, as well as alternative policy measures to help the sector and its customers,” Soh said. — TMR / pic TMR File