MANILA, Philippines – The Manila Electric Company (Meralco) reported that its consolidated core net income in 2022 rose by 10% to P27.1 billion, as energy sales exceeded pre-pandemic levels and its power generation business saw boosted earnings growth.
In a stock exchange filing on Monday, February 27, the Philippines’ largest private sector electric distribution firm said that its revenues increased by 34% to P426.5 billion mainly due to higher pass-through charges.
“Despite a surge of Omicron cases in the early part of 2022, followed by the macroeconomic impact of the Russia-Ukraine War on commodity prices and supply for most of the year, sales demand continued its upward trajectory as businesses and public confidence recovered from the pandemic,” the company, led by businessman and sports patron Manuel V. Pangilinan, said.
Meralco added that the minimal restrictions in commercial and social activities during and after the national and local elections in May 2022, lifting of mandatory use of face masks, and the resumption of face-to-face schooling and onsite work arrangements contributed to the higher demand for power.
“2022 was a year of recovery as we saw energy sales exceeding pre-pandemic levels—reflective of the return of strong power demand across all customer segments after more than two years of pandemic lockdowns. We continued to boost operational efficiency and ended the year with less and shorter service interruptions as well as improvements in system loss, which were achieved through our investments to strengthen our distribution network and through innovations that improve the service we deliver to our 7.6 million customers,” said Meralco president and CEO Ray Espinosa.
Average retail rate went up 16% to P9.52 per kilowatt hour due to higher pass-through charges as a result of higher global fuel prices, elevated spot market prices, as well as the peso’s depreciation.
Operating expenses increased by 18% to P37.4 billion.
Meralco’s capital expenditures in 2022 reached P42.6 billion, of which P19 billion went to new connections, asset renewals, and load growth projects.
“Meralco’s exceptional operational and financial performance last year reflects our consistent efforts to deliver stable and reliable electric service to help power the Philippine economy. Our service area in aggregate accounts for about half of the country’s gross domestic product, which grew 7.6% last year, its fastest in four decades. This highlights the crucial role we play in powering the continued recovery efforts of our country, especially with persisting challenges that include soaring inflation and anticipated global slowdown this year,” Pangilinan said.
Meralco accounts for 55% of the country’s electricity output and serves 38 cities and 73 towns. – Rappler.com
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