New Charges For Electricity And Water For Expats Will Take Effect From Sep 2017
The National Assembly yesterday overwhelmingly passed a law allowing the government to hike electricity and water charges for expatriates after completely excluding Kuwaiti citizens. The new charges will take effect from September 2017, ie after 15 months of its publication in the official gazette.
The law states that Kuwaiti families living in apartment buildings are exempted unless they have other houses. The exemption applies to only one house. A number of MPs called for exempting several houses for those Kuwaitis who are married to more than one wife, but the Assembly rejected the motion.
According to the law, the hike in electricity and water tariffs applies to apartment buildings (expatriates only), the commercial sector, industrial and agricultural sectors and government offices. It applies after one year on commercial activities which will be charged a flat rate of 25 fils per kilowatt. On government offices, it applies after 18 months and after 21 months on industrial and agricultural activities.
The new charges will be hiked for expatriates from the current 2 fils per kilowatt to the following: 1- Five fils per kilowatt for the first 1,000 kilowatts.
2- 10 fils per kilowatt for between 1,000 and 2,000 kW. 3- 15 fils per kilowatt for consumption above 2,000 kW.
The consumption is calculated on a monthly basis. Current average monthly charges for a medium-size apartment is around KD 5-7. But under the new charges, the monthly bill in summer months, when air-conditioning does not stop, could easily hit above KD 50 depending on consumption.
In summer months, May-September, the monthly consumption of medium-sized apartments is roughly around 3,000 kW. This means the bill will be KD 30. If consumption rises to 4,000 kW, the bill will be KD 45 and so on. In winter months, the rate will remain around KD 5 or slightly above that, also depending on consumption.