Power

NERC Deregulates Meter Prices Under MAP

By Sunday Etuka, Abuja

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The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has deregulated the prices of meters deployed under the Meter Asset Provider (MAP) Scheme, with effect from 1 May 2024.

This, the Commission said, was done to enable end-use customers acquire meters from MAPs of their choice based on competitive open market prices determined from transparent bidding frameworks.

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In an Order signed by the Chairman, Engr. Sanusi Garba, NERC explained that the deregulation also follows the request made by the MAPs and Local Meter Manufactures/Assemblers (LMMAs) for a further review of meter prices in consideration of significant changes in NGN/USD foreign exchange rate and inflation rate since the last price review in September 2023, stating that the significant changes in these macroeconomic variables has constrained their ability to supply meters at the approved regulated price.

He said, the Commission has noted the need for the efficient pricing of meters to respond more quickly to changes in macroeconomic parameters, particularly exchange rates.

“The Commission has further taken cognisance of the constraints/challenges faced by MAPs and LMMAs and therefore approved the deregulation of prices of meters deployed under the MAP scheme with effect from 1 May 2024”, he added.

The NERC Order said, “with effect from 1 May 2024, all prices of meters under the MAP scheme shall be determined through a competitive bidding process with customers provided with a choice of authorised vendors.

“The combined effects of sections 16(1 31 and 32(1) of the Regulations on the regulated pricing of meters deployed under the MAP scheme is hereby derogated.

“The cost of prices of meters deployed under the MAP scheme is HEREBY DEREGULATED to enable end-use customers acquire meters from MAPs OF their choice based on competitive open market prices determined from transparent bidding frameworks.

“All MAP permits holders are henceforth eligible to provide services and transact for the provision of meters and metering services with any DisCo in the Federal Republic of Nigeria with their existing permit. The lifting OF the restriction on permitting to operate in all DisCos is subject to the mandatory requirement for MAPs to comply with the associated DisCo specific requirements/specifications.

“All DisCos shall ensure the effective and seamless integration of smart meters deployed by MAPs with the DisCo’s head-end systems and meter data management systems.

“All DisCos shall provide a publicly accessible online portal on their website where prospective MAPs can view the DisCo’s technical specifications and commercial terms for participation as a MAP within its network area.

“All DisCos are required to conduct a thorough test and confirmation of specifications for new meters proposed by a prospective MAP and concluded no later than 20 working days from the date the proposed MAP fulfils all the requirements specified on the online portal to participate within its network area. Where a meter fails the confirmation test, the DisCo shall immediately notify the MAP stating the points of failure.

“Meters to be deployed under the MAP scheme may include other types of meters including basic electronic meters, Internet of Things (IOT) meters, DIN Rail meters and Current Limiters but subject to full compliance with the NESI Metering Code and the requirements/specifications of DisCos. The type of the meter applicable to a customer under the MAP scheme shall be at the discretion of the DisCo having regard to the customer energy consumption.

The pricing of meters under the MAP scheme is hereby deregulated but subject to an open transparent competition amongst MAP permit holders.

The Commission shall, in the interim, manage the process of submitting price offers valid for one month (or as may be determined by the Commission) for meters deployed under the MAP scheme to engender transparency and competition”, the Order said.

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