11 November 2013, Lilongwe — Malawi’s Electricity Supply Commission (Escom) will have all its 245,000 domestic clients put on pre-paid system by 2017 to help low income clients spend less than they do on post-paid system.
Escom Business Development and Marketing Manager, Wiseman Kabwazi, disclosed this on Friday in Lilongwe during a media update on the activities laid out following the entering into force of the Millennium Challenge Compact last September, which among other things aims at reforming the power sector.
Kabwazi described the post-paid system as not being economically helpful to low income clients and that the new pre-paid system would allow them spend within their means.
Explained Kabwazi: “With the post-paid system, there is a fixed charge of about MK1, 350 which a client pays every month: having used the electricity or not. This means the client pays the fixed charge plus the per-kilowatt-hour-unit charge for the whole month.
“But with the pre-paid system you only pay for the per-kilowatt-hour-unit charge for the whole month and there is no any fixed charge, which is very ideal for low income clients.”
Kabwazi said so far, Escom had raised the pre-paid connections from 35,000 last year to 86, 000 this year and that by 2017, the Commission will have installed the pre-paid system to all its 245 existing domestic clients and to more new clients.
On the other hand, Escom, is pushing for a cost reflective tariff regime which when adopted will see the rise in the utility’s price to enable the power sector attract more investors, thereby improving access to quality electricity to all Malawians.
“Cost reflective tariff will allow Escom to expand and meet the growing demand with quality services than it is the situation now,” explained Kabwazi.
– Malawi News Agency