Lagos — Meter Asset Providers, MAPs, are demanding an increase in the price of prepaid meters. They have asked the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, NERC, to implement an upward review of the current price of the meters.
A statement issued by 17 meter providers at the end of a meeting in Lagos, said the upward price review was in view of rising inflation, continued upward movement of foreign exchange rates, associated increases in customs costs, increase in container freight costs, and the disruptions in the international supply chain, leading to a global increase in the prices of raw materials and components for the manufacture of prepaid meters.
According to the group, the power sector suffers from a huge metering gap, and closing the gap will improve revenue collection, transparency, payment discipline, and ensure customer satisfaction in the power industry.
They, however, noted that there would be a corresponding downward review of meter prices whenever there was a downward movement in foreign exchange rates and other cost factors.
To close the metering gap, the President Muhammadu Buhari administration had in the past and recently, implemented various interventions such as the MAPs itself, including regulations and the implementation of the National Mass Metering Programme, NMMP.
There have also been various interventions from the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, and the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment.
The group also called on the CBN to guarantee access to foreign exchange to local meter manufacturers and assemblers for the procurement of parts and accessories (Completely Knocked Down (CKD) or Semi Knocked Down (SKD) parts), including equipment for meter manufacturing/production as well as expansion of factory infrastructure.
It also called for removal of bottlenecks in the customs clearing process, change in the modalities for the implementation of the presidential waiver of the 35 per cent levy on fully built prepaid meters and extension up to December 2022, combined implementation of MAP and NMMP programmes, among other policy implementation, saying these would go a long way in bridging the metering gap and achieving federal government’s metering target.