FG to invest N39mn on electric meter manufacturing – Minister


..TCN wheeling capacity now 7124MW – MD

The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Raji Fashola has stated that Federal government will invest N39 million to electric meter manufacturing companies to increase consumer confidence and boost revenue.

Fashola who was represented by Minister of State II, Hon. Suleiman Hassan Zarma stated this yesterday in Abuja, during the commissioning of 1x100MVA, 330/132kV power transformer at Katampe Substation, Abuja.

He stated government intends to allocate power directly from the generating company to large consumers, adding that several regulations are being put in place to ensure seamless generation, transmission and distribution of power.

He said, “Eligible customer regulation allows large consumers to buy their power directly from GENCOs and then contact TCN, DISCOs and investors to have the power delivered to them.

“The Meter Service Regulation can unlock investment into meters which is urgently needed to win consumer trust and boost collection efficiency.

“Government seeks to apply that policy through a private company and local meter manufacturers to invest N39bn in meters as settlement of a court judgement against government.

“Some distribution companies are already perfecting and trying on franchising arrangement that will enable customers focus on solution for difficult customer population” he stated.

In his address, the Managing Director of Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) Usman Gur Mohammed said that the commissioned substation will inject additional 100MVA into the grid and bring the total volume to 220MVA which will be distribution to 18 communities in the FCT. He said that similar upgrade was also done at the Apo substation.

Hear him, “The transformer we are about to commission today, would increase the station’s transmission capacity at Katempe 132kV level, from 120MVA to 220MVA.

“The transformer capacity of Apo substation has also been increased to 290MVA. This would enable TCN wheel more bulk electricity to the Abuja Electricity Distribution Company. With this development, TCN has satisfied the redundancy requirement, in line with N-1 reliability criterion, at both Katampe and Apo Substations.

“The Katampe 330/132/33kV substation was commissioned in 2003, with initial installed capacity of 2x60MVA at 132kV level and in 2004, it was upgraded with 2x150MVA at 330kV level.

“The Katampe substation can be described as a transmission hub, because several 132/33kV substations take their supply from the substation” he stated.

The MD added that in line with TCN’s Grid Expansion Programme, project timeline unlike in the past, is set by TCN and any contractor who is unable to meet the target will have its projects revoked and handed over to TCN engineers.

The commissioning was followed by the 24th monthly meeting of the Honourable Minister of Power, Works and Housing with operators of the Power Sector.

In a communiqué issued at the end of the meeting, the Ministry of Power reiterated its commitment to improve electricity service delivery by developing policy initiatives such as: “The N701 billion Payment Assurance Guarantee to generating companies Eligible Customer Regulations Metering Regulations.

“The meeting reiterated its purpose, and in addition deliberated and agreed as follows:
TCN noted that it had increased its wheeling capacity to 7124MW, while seeking to complete further expansion both through its Transmission Rehabilitation and Expansion Programme in line with the 20 Year Transmission Expansion Plan.

“The Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trader (NBET) noted that the FEC approved valuation of MDA debts of approximately N27billion owed to Distribution Companies by MDAs will be deducted from the current debts owed by the Distribution Companies to NBET. NBET has applied to the appropriate agencies of the Federal Government to pay an equivalent sum to the GenCos.

“TCN reported improved performance of power transmission in 2017 compared to 2016, with a higher peak transmission (5222MW in 2017 vs 5075MW in 2016), fewer system collapses, and shorter interruption disruptions (2hrs 36 minutes in 2017 vs 3hrs 36 minutes in 2016) Olorunsogo, Calabar NIPP and Omotosho were identified as the best performing Gas/Steam plant in 2017 due to improved availability, while Jebba was the best performing Hydro plant” the communiqué stated.

TCN noted that an interface contact person has been appointed for each DisCo to speed up resolution of all grid interface issues.

The event was attended by Permanent Secretary (Power), FMPW&H – Engr. Louis Edozien and other stakeholders like Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), Generating Companies (GenCos), Distribution Companies (DisCos), Gas Companies (GasCos).

Other government agencies in attendace included Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC), the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trader (NBET), Nigerian Electricity Liability Management Company (NELMCO) and Nigerian Electricity Management Services Agency (NEMSA) as well as Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC).

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Ihesiulo Grace

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