By Udeme Akpan
THE Meters Asset Providers, MAPs, have appealed to the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Bank of Industry, BOI, and other development banks to provide funds, targeted at enabling them close 4.5 million metering gap in Nigeria.
The companies believe that CBN, BOI and other financial institutions have the capacity to provide the funds required for the programme, expected to enable the Electricity Distribution Companies, DISCOs, to deliver power to many customers nationwide, adding that the rollout of the meters would positively affect many individuals, households and companies, and by extension the entire economy.
In an exclusive telephone interview with Vanguard, weekend, the president, Electric Meters Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, EMMAN, who is also the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Mojec International Limited, Ms. Chantelle Abdul, said: “MOJEC and other companies have made or are making arrangements to finance the provision of meters. However, it will be better for CBN, BOI and others to provide funds, especially as the cost of electricity meters is still regulated in Nigeria, meaning that we are not allowed to charge commercial rates.”
Abdul, whose company is expected to provide 75 per cent of the meters, said: “Consequently, we need banks, especially CBN and BOI to provide the funds at very reasonable interest rates. This is very important because although a few banks may be willing to finance activities in the sector, the funds come at high-interest rates.”
Meanwhile, the investigation showed that Abuja Electricity Distribution Company, AEDC, has started the rollout of pre-paid meters to consumers.
This, it was gathered, became possible as a result of an alliance with Mojec, AEDC and the partner banks.
Further investigation showed that some DISCOs, including Eko DISCO, have already completed the signing of agreements with many meter companies and are ready to roll out the meters.
It was gathered that other DISCOs, such as Kaduna Distribution Company, Kano Distribution Company, Yola Distribution Company, Jos Distribution Company, Ibadan Distribution Company, Ikeja Distribution Company, Benin Distribution Company, Port Harcourt Distribution Company and Enugu Distribution Company have either completed signing agreements or in the process of signing their agreements.