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Fuel Cost Relief programmes extended

Local News 26 Oct, 2022 Follow News

Fuel Cost Relief programmes extended

Residents and businesses in Grand Cayman will benefit from two Fuel Cost Relief programmes over the next few months. Caribbean Utilities Company, Ltd. (“CUC” or “the Company”) recognizes that current fuel prices are causing difficulties for our customers.

It is hoped that this will be a short- term issue and to this end, the Company sought and received approval from the Utility Regulation and Competition Office (“OfReg”) for a CUC Fuel Cost relief programme which will include all customers. CUC understands that along with the challenges faced by our residential customers, many of our commercial customers are still recovering from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The CUC programme offers relief to both commercial and residential customers.

Additionally, as a result of continued high fuel costs and the resulting impact to electricity bills, the Cayman Islands Government (“CIG”)-funded Fuel Relief programme for residential customers has been extended.  Both the CIG and CUC programmes will be effective for electricity consumption from October 1, 2022 through December 31, 2022.

The CUC Fuel Relief programme will apply to all customers and will cap the amount of the fuel factor paid by customers to CI$ 0.20 per kiloWatt hour (“kWh”). This $0.20 includes all line items that make up the fuel factor which are: Fuel Cost, Fuel Duty and the Renewable Energy charge. CUC’s Fuel Relief programme is applicable to all levels of consumption for all customers.

As before, the CIG Fuel Cost Relief Programme will apply to residential customers with consumption between 101 kWh and 2,000 kWh and will cap the amount of the Fuel Cost paid by customers to CI$ 0.15 per kWh by contributing up to CI$0.05 per kWh over and above the CUC Fuel Relief Programme. The offering of this relief is timely as the fuel cost for electricity consumption in October is the highest so far for the year. However, fuel costs are expected to decrease for November’s consumption.

The volatility in fuel costs and the long summer months always result in increases in customer bills. As a result, CUC worked with CIG to offer residential customers some relief on the fuel costs during the months of July, August and September 2022. However, October is typically the fourthhighest month in electricity consumption, which combined with the peak fuel prices flowing through in the same month was anticipated to cause a price spike. The CUC Fuel relief programme is not a grant programme. It is intended to reduce the impact of the current fuel spike. The costs deferred during this programme will be recovered over a 1-year period and will commence in 2023, without the addition of financing charges.

President and CEO of CUC, Mr. Richard Hew, stated that, “CUC is committed to providing ongoing support to its customers through these difficult times and it was important that we seek approval from OfReg to provide fuel factor relief at this time. This will ease the burden on residents and businesses at a time when they need it most. Global events continue to negatively impact local businesses and the cost of living, not only in the Cayman Islands but around the world. As a Company we are committed to doing what we can to assist our customers during these tough times while at the same time taking steps to remain a reliable and financially viable operation.”

The savings experienced by customers on these programmes will vary based on consumption. Customers are encouraged to use this opportunity to continue to conserve energy and use the tools available on our MyCUC portal to monitor energy usage.

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