Singapore’s Open Electricity Market in a Nutshell

November 1, 2018, ushered in a new era for the electricity market in Singapore as the Open Electricity Market (OEM) was extended to all consumers across Singapore by zones. The ongoing buzz on the Open Electricity Market sounds novel, but what actually is it?

Primary Concept

The Energy Market Authority’s (EMA) ongoing effort to open up the retail electricity market to competition aims to deliver competitive pricing and electricity offers for the benefit of Singaporean households and businesses. The commencement of the Open Electricity Market means that  all eligible households and small businesses will have the option to purchase electricity from whom they wish.

What type of choices do consumers have?

Consumers may either stick to purchasing electricity from SP group at a regulated tariff or may switch to any retailer of their choice. They may compare prices and choose to buy from any retailer that suits their requirement. It is to be noted that this switch is neither necessary nor does it have any deadline.

This choice is not immediately available to everyone. Rollout schedule differ for different areas of the island but it will culminate by May 1, 2019. Therefore, consumers can only exercise their choice once the OEM extends to their area.

Zone First 2 Postal Code Digits Rollout Dates
1 58 to 78 1 November 2018
2 53 to 57, 79 to 80, 82 to 83 1 January 2019
3 34 to 52, 81 1 March 2019
4 01 to 33 1 May 2019

How do price plans differ?

There are currently two main kinds of price plans for the customers, who intend to switch (called contestable customers), to choose from.

Fixed Price Plan: Consumers is made to pay a constant rate throughout the contract duration irrespective of its deviation from the regulated tariff. It may be higher or lower than the regulated tariff. Furthermore, the regulated tariff is reviewed quarterly.

Discount Off the Regulated Tariff Plan: Consumers is offered a fixed discount on the regulated tariff during the entire contract period.

While the former plan is suited for consumers who want stability in prices irrespective of bill amount, the latter one is more suitable for consumers who don’t mind fluctuating electricity prices every quarter, as long as it remains below the regulated tariff.

So, who are the participating retailers?

There are 13 retailers available for Singaporean consumers to choose from. To name a few, Geneco (by Seraya Energy Pte Ltd) and Sembcorp Power Pte Ltd offer a fixed price plan for 17.98 cents/kWh and a discount off regulated tariff plan with 22.0% and 21.80% fixed discount respectively for a contract period of 24 months, while some retailers like Ohm Energy Pte Ltd and Senoko Electric Pte Ltd offer plans for 12 months duration also. Homeowners and businesses should explore the services and plans of each retailer on their website to find what is suitable for them.

Final Thoughts

Out of the choices available for consumers to choose from, it is entirely dependent on consumers’ requirements and convenience as to which plan they opt for. But one thing is sure, the Open Electricity Market has indeed provided flexibility to consumers, and the entire concept has been well welcomed by the public.

With so many retailers catering to varying electricity needs, find out more about one which plays a part in the Open Electricity Market.

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