June 13, 2024
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The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has announced the deregulation of meter prices under the Meter Asset Provider (MAP) Scheme for end-user customers.  

This is contained in a circular issued by the commission on Monday .  

Effective from May 1, 2024, the new order will introduce a competitive bidding process, allowing customers to choose from a variety of authorized vendors. This will mark a significant shift from the previously regulated pricing structure. 

According to the NERC’s latest order, all prices of meters within the MAP scheme will be determined through competitive bidding.  

This move is expected to foster transparency and reduce prices, as customers will have the freedom to select their preferred meter providers among those authorized under the scheme. 

The deregulation lifts previous restrictions, allowing all MAP permit holders to provide services across all Electricity Distribution Companies (DisCos) in the Federal Republic of Nigeria, provided they meet specific requirements.

This broader operational scope is anticipated to increase competition among MAPs, potentially leading to better services and innovations in metering solutions. 

DisCos are mandated to ensure that smart meters provided by MAPs are seamlessly integrated into their head-end systems and meter data management systems.  

Furthermore, they must provide a publicly accessible online portal displaying their technical specifications and commercial terms for MAP participation. This ensures a standardized approach to meter installation and function across the board. 

A thorough testing and confirmation process for new meters have been outlined, with DisCos required to complete these evaluations within 20 working days from when a MAP meets all specified requirements. Meters that fail the confirmation test must be promptly reported to the MAP with details on the failure points. 

The deregulation also introduces flexibility in the types of meters available under the MAP scheme.  

DisCos can now offer basic electronic meters, IoT meters, DIN rail meters, and current limiters, depending on the customer’s energy consumption profile. 

While deregulating meter prices, NERC will oversee the submission of price offers from MAPs to ensure fair competition.  

This includes a requirement for MAPs to hold a minimum stock of 2,000 units of meters as an eligibility criterion for participation in the bidding process. 

End-use customers now have the sole right to choose their preferred MAP and meter types, which align with their specific energy needs.  

Additionally, stringent measures have been placed to ensure timely installation of meters, with penalties for MAPs that fail to meet installation deadlines. 

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