Newspaper article China Post

Premier Halts Power Hike until Oct. 2013

Newspaper article China Post

Premier Halts Power Hike until Oct. 2013

Article excerpt

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Premier Sean Chen yesterday announced that the Cabinet has decided to halt the power hike originally scheduled for Dec. 10. According to local reports, the final decision will not be made before Oct. 1, 2013.

Chen said the Cabinet made the decision to ease the pressure of price hikes on citizens, companies and industries alike. The decision was also made to soften the impact of the third round of quantitative easing (QE3) announced by the U.S. Federal Reserve.

According to Chen, QE3 and the European Central Bank's monetary policies are both likely to fuel inflation. After the announcement of QE3, gold, minerals and oil prices all rose. Foreign exchange markets and financial markets were also affected.

Economic Minister Shih Yen-shiang ([...]) stated that the changes in the global economic conditions this year have been beyond expectations.

Shih added that he and his ministry should be responsible for the power-rate about-face.

President Ma Ying-jeou said yesterday that neither the KMT nor the Taiwan Power Co. (Taipower, [...]) will collapse because of the decision.

Chen's announcement came after a series of meetings with Kuomintang (KMT) legislators, government officials and KMT members. Presidential Office Secretary-General Tseng Yung-chuan ([...]) concluded in a meeting on Sept. 16 that the consensus among KMT legislators is that the power hike should be halted, that the Cabinet should make the announcement as early as possible, and that the result of Taipower's reform has not met the expectations of the public.

Electricity Rates to Change According to Equation

To avoid the controversy usually surrounding the adjustment of power rates, Chen urged the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) to set an equation for electricity prices, instead of raising the electricity prices whenever Taipower suffers losses.

According to the premier, the average electricity price was NT$2.76 per kilowatt in 1982 and NT$2. …

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