The Independent Electricity Market Operator of the Philippines (IEMOP) said Friday that the average price on the wholesale electricity spot market (WESM) during the month as of Oct. 20 was P6.75 per kilowatt hour (kWh), up from P3.30 in September.

The increase was attributed to thin supply margins due to maintenance and forced outages of several generators, Eryl Jansen D. Gregana, IEMOP market simulation and analysis senior specialist, said at an online briefing.

“In addition, there is also a notable increase in electricity demand, the levels of which are almost the same as the pre-pandemic levels,” IEMOP said in a statement.

Plant outages, both forced and planned, include the outages of some gas-fired units due to the Malampaya maintenance shutdown, the independent market operator said.

The Malampaya gas field was closed between Oct. 2 and Oct. 22.

The average supply for October was 13,376 megawatts (MW), down from the previous month’s 14,290 MW.

Demand for October rose to 10,250 MW from 9,928 MW. – Arjay L. Balinbin