04/08/2020 – News / Energy / Power Utilities / Saudi Electricity Company / SEC / Saudi Arabia
Amid Covid-19, Saudi Electric offers support to boost KSA’s industrial activity
Covid-19 has negatively impacted firms across all industries, yet power utilities have been quick to adapt to the situation and ensure business continuity. Saudi Electricity Company (SEC) – the Kingdom’s state-owned utility – has launched numerous measures designed to support its industrial customers and boost the economy.
Customer relation management and brand perception are currently viewed as of the utmost importance for the utilities to hold on to their customer base. In accordance with such efforts, SEC has laid down a plan to safeguard the interests of its private, commercial and industrial sector consumers, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.
Bill payment grace period
The Saudi Electric Company has postponed the cancellations and disconnections of electrical services due to the non-payment of bills during the Covid-19 outbreak. The utility would provide merchants and factory owners the option to pay 50 per cent of the April, May and June 2020 bills. The remaining can be paid in installments over the six months starting from January 2021. This might specifically bring relief to the small and medium industries (finding it difficult to pay for their electricity consumption) who might have been experiencing a financial crunch during the crisis.
30% discount for commercial, industrial and agri consumers
As an added assistance, a 30-per-cent discount on electricity bills is being provided to the companies operating in the commercial, industrial and agricultural streams for April and May 2020, which could be extended if necessary. The support being provided by the SEC is not expected to affect the net income of the company in 2020. The notification received from the Electricity & Cogeneration Regulatory Authority (ECRA) allowed the company to balance out any potential decline in revenue through a likewise drop in operating expenses (represented by reduced municipalities fees).
Supporting private sector for KSA’s economic revival
“These measures are in line with the government’s greater objective of supporting the private sector,” commented Somik Das, Senior Power Analyst at GlobalData. “In the case of an economic slump in the near-term uncertain market conditions, these private sector streams are likely to play a key part in the revival of the economy. Hence, the government is showing a keen interest in maintaining the health of the sector.”