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Increase in energy exports in Costa Rica

Costa Rica will host the meeting of the Regional Electricity Interconnection Commission, this as a result of the national growth regarding the export of energy in the Regional Electricity Market (MER, for its acronym in Spanish).

According to the Public Services Regulatory Authority (ARESEP, for its acronym in Spanish), from 2018 to the current year, there has been a significant growth, which allows the country to generate additional income, which will later be applied as final tariffs to consumers.

Last year, more than one million megawatt hours (MWh) were exported, which represented revenues in excess of USD 50 million per year and allowed the reduction of costs in electricity tariffs to the final consumer.

The Intendant of Energy, Mario Mora, said that “Costa Rica is having a very favorable participation in the MER, being in the last two years the country that exports more to the Regional Electricity Market”.

Revenues from these exports, when placed by the Costa Rican Electricity Institute (ICE, for its acronym in Spanish), contribute to reduce the operating costs of the National Electric System (SEN, for its acronym in Spanish).

The production of electrical energy is based mainly on hydro generation plants owned by the Costa Rican Electricity Institute, whose energy production capacity is sufficient to satisfy internal demand and market the surplus.

During this last quarter of 2022, tariffs were reduced between 18% and 1.5%, according to the energy distributor, and highlighted the effect of the income that the country received from the export of electricity between last May and July. The export amount of ₡19,028 million, are currently passed on to the users of the electricity system.

Total electricity exports from 2018 to 2022 were more than double imports, USD 153 million compared to imports of USD 70 million, which is undoubtedly placing the country before one more option in search of a national economic improvement and for the consumers.

Daniela Quesada
García & Bodán
Costa Rica