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NERC to review MAP scheme as meter deployment suffers setback

The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) is set to review the Meter Asset Provider (MAP) scheme as deployment suffers a setback.
In a consultation paper issued yesterday, and signed by the NERC Chairman, Sanusi Garba, the regulator said only 611,231 meters have been deployed under the MAP scheme as of January 31, adding that more than half of registered electricity customers in the country remain unmetered.
He said the purpose of the review is to look at the various options to fast-track the closure of the metering gap within the implementation framework of the MAP.

Garba added that to ensure transparency in the meter roll-out as provided for in the MAP regulations, deployment of meters could not commence until August 2019 following the conclusion of competitive procurement by DisCos which was monitored by the Commission.

He said: “A total of 611,231 meters have been deployed as of 31st January 2021 under the MAP initiative since its full operation despite the COVID –19 pandemic and other extraneous factors. The challenge of closing the metering gap in NESI persists, as more than half of the registered electricity customers remain unmetered.

“The purpose of this Consultation Paper is to review the various options to fast track the closure of the metering gap within the implementation framework of the MAP Regulations and the NMMP and consider the merits and demerits of each option.

“Proposed options for metering implementation going forward is to allow the implementation of both the NMMP and MAP metering frameworks to run concurrently; to continue with the current MAP framework with meters procured under the NMMP supplied only through MAPs (by being off-takers from the local manufacturers/assemblers); and to wind down the MAP framework and allow the DisCos to procure meters directly from local manufacturers/assemblers (or as procured by the WB), and enter into new contracts for the installation and maintenance of such meters.

“The DisCos shall continue to be accountable for metering as this remains a core responsibility of utilities and a contractual obligation in their Performance Agreements with the Bureau for Public Enterprises (“BPE”).”

In 2018, the NERC issued the MAP regulation as a regulatory initiative to fast track the closure of the metering gap and eliminate estimated billing practices, attract private investment in the provision of metering services, enhance revenue assurance in the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) and promote local meter manufacturing in Nigeria.

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