Yangon electricity board to receive its first budget

Yangon City Electricity Supply Board (YESB) will have its own budget beginning April 1 as part of a government-wide process of professionalising state-owned firms.

YESB and other state firms are under pressure to transform the enterprises into professional businesses and separate them from day-to-day control by government departments.

YESB has officially begun corporatising since 2014 with the aim of eventually becoming privatised. The board provides electricity to Yangon, which uses about 50 percent of nationwide energy.

YESB vice president U Maung Maung Latt said it will remain 100pc government owned for the time being, but its practices are being updated with the separate budget.

“We will keep to the corporatisation practice in line with business standards,” he said.

Last year, the board had made tentative steps toward privatisation, inviting several private companies to discuss the alternative. However, under guidance from its parent organisation the Ministry of Electric Power, officials eventually decided to pursue corporatisation first.

“It will take four or five years to get used to operating well as a corporation,” said U Maung Maung Latt. “Later we will discuss the next step of private participation in YESB.”

He did not provide more detailed information regarding the size of the independent budget or operation of YESB.

The board is the main regulator in Yangon as well as being responsible for electricity distribution in the city.

It buys electricity from Myanma Electric Power Enterprise at K60 a kilowatt hour, generating a monthly income of K31 billion (US$30 million) after a move last year to increase the price for consumers.

Before the tariff hike it generated monthly revenues of about K20 billion.

Source: Myanmar Times

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