Meralco offers to defer collection of bill deposits


MANILA, Philippines—Manila Electric Co. (Meralco), the country’s biggest power distributor, has offered to defer the collection of additional bill deposits to January 2013 instead of this month to ease the impact of these charges on its affected customers.

The distribution utility said it was also willing to stagger or spread the collection of the bill deposits over a 12-month period instead of its original plan to give its customers only 30 days to settle their deposit insufficiency.

These developments were an offshoot of a meeting between the Energy Regulatory Commission and Meralco on Friday to look for other options that will ease the payment terms for the additional bill deposits.

The bill deposit is a standard fee paid for when applying for electricity connection with any distribution utility like Meralco. The amount may be adjusted later on depending on the customer’s actual monthly electricity bills. It may also be redeemed should the customer choose to terminate the services of Meralco.

According to Energy Regulatory Commission executive director Francis Saturnino Juan, the ERC chair has already directed Meralco to formalize its proposals for verification and confirmation by the commission that such moves are consistent with the relevant provisions of the Magna Carta for Electricity Consumers.

Some Meralco customers received this month a notice in their electricity bills to pay an additional amount to cover the adjustments in their bill deposits, which will serve as “security” for unpaid electricity bills.

This is the first time that Meralco adjusted the bill deposits–which should be equivalent to one month worth of a customer’s electricity consumption.

Each customer whose kilowatt-hour consumption had risen by at least 10 percent or more from the time it first started using the services of Meralco will thus have to pay an additional amount for the bill deposit.

Liza Rose Diangson, vice president for customer process of Meralco, said on Thursday that roughly 25 percent or 1.25 million of Manila Electric Co.’s over 5 million customers were expected to pay additional bill deposits while another 25 percent were expected to get refunds. The remaining customers will not be affected, Diangson said.

But in a statement issued yesterday, Meralco clarified that only 90,000 of its customers got letters this October notifying them of their need to pay additional bill deposits.

Meralco explained  that only customers who have received at least three disconnection notices or whose electric service have actually been disconnected the past 12 months prior to their contract anniversary date had received these notification letters.

Customers who have been diligent in paying their electricity bills on or before due date, meanwhile, did not receive the letters.

Get Inquirer updates while on the go, add us on these apps:

Inquirer Viber

Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.

  • better future

    Pls. back tracked in every Meralco costumers since they are availing services from meralco & how the interest they earned. GREEDY!!!!

  • santosboi


  • 88Cindy

    mahirap talaga kapag ang nagmamayari at nangangasiwa ay sakim.
    mabuti pa ang buwaya na kapag nabusog ay tigil na sa pagkain.
    ang ibang tusong negosyante ay walang kabusugan. sobra ang kagahaman.

  • Budsky

    No wonder a lot of people remained poor because of laws enacted by idiot lawmakers. Electric consumers are already paying the lifeline users and the losses on electricity not consumed by them and now they are charging those who are paying their bills. Only in the Philippines.

  • padrefaura

    payag ako ng bill deposit as long as may interest ito at pwedeng kunin o ibawas sa bill ng kuryente ang interest.

    tindi manggulang ng Meralco. yung bill deposit hindi naman kailangan. 1 week ka lang hindi magbayad puputulan ka na.. 

  • vilmavee

    MERALCO has always been on the look out as to how they can generate more revenues.  The bill deposit is just their way of generating more revenues without really lifting a finger.  Really now, how many of their consumers would really like their electricity services cut off?  I am sure not even 10% or very insignificant number.  The rest are the same consumers who pay for all the stolen electricity mostly by informal settlers.  MERALCO does not do enough to discourage these kind of thievery, because after all, they are able to recover it.  Marcos was right in taking this company from the Lopezes because their greed knows no bounds.  It was unfortunate that Cory gave it back to their fellow oligarch (the Lopezes) who now bleed the population.  

    It is time for all of us to consider solar generated electricity.  God provides and this energy is free.

  • Yolly

    as i understand it pls. correct me if im wrong, unpaid bills are being lodged to systems loss, so there is no need for bill deposit, this is double jeopardy on our part the poor consumers

    • RiverHorse

      ano ba talaga gusto ni MVP dyan sa bill deposit na yan? sabihin na lang kasi ng deretso na naliliitan sya sa kita ng meralco at gusto nya mabawi yung ginastos sa pagbili ng digitel. TAPOS ANG USAPAN!

To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.

Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:

c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City,Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94


editors' picks



latest videos