The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has declared that it will begin the enforcement of the new metering policy from April 3, 2018. This policy gives rise to a new class of operators in the power sector known as the Meter Assets providers (MAPs) whose primary duty is to provide meters for the customer base of a particular distribution company (DisCo). The MAPs are to be selected by the DisCos via a fair selection process of tendering.
This policy seeks to bridge the widening metering gap in the electricity supply industry. Reports affirmed that the country’s metering gap had increased to about 4.74 million, as power consumers welcomed the new policy, describing it as a panacea for meter unavailability. In the MAPR 2018 report, with Regulation No; NERC-R-112, which was released by the regulator NERC said, “These regulations shall come into effect on the 8th day of March, 2018.
The report stated, “The metering gap for all distribution licensees was reported at 4,740,275 meters as of December 31, 2017. This is projected to significantly increase upon the conclusion of the ongoing customer enumeration exercise.”
The Commissioner, Legal, Licensing and Compliance, NERC, Dafe Akpeneye, explained that the MAPs would now take up the duty of providing meters to customers, among other functions. Buttressing the objectives of the MAPR 2018, the commission stated that the main objective of the regulations was to provide standard rules to encourage the development of independent and competitive meter services in the electricity supply industry and eliminate estimated billing. Other objectives are to attract private investments to the provision of metering services, close the metering gap through accelerated meter rollout, and enhance revenue assurance in the power sector.
On metering gap and obligations to power distribution companies, the MAPR 2018 stated that Discos were responsible for meeting their metering targets as specified by the commission from time to time.