The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), has sent a proposal to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), for a N200 billion single digit interest loan to aid investment into the Metering Asset provider (MAP) regulation.
In an interview with Leadership at a power dialogue organised by Nextiere in Abuja, NERC’s Commissioner of Finance & Management Services, Nathan Shitti, said the size of the loan scheme was determined by calculated provision of over 4 million meters at a price of N50,000 per unit.
“What we told CBN was that we need their support for the MAP operators in terms of provision of a loan facility of about N200 billion. The facility is expected to be given at a single digit interest rate.
“We asked for that amount because our analysis shows that there is a gap of over 4 million meters in the market, and at an average of N50,000 per meter that will amount to N200 billion required.
Shitti says the commission is still waiting for a response from the apex bank. However, we have not heard from CBN but we are optimistic that they will make the facility available,” he said.
The regulation which came into force on the 3rd of April, will allow third parties deliver meters directly to customers. The regulation, however, will see the end-users pay, not to the third parties directly, but to the distribution companies, through a service charge.
The NERC finance commissioner, says the regulation was developed in conjunction with stakeholders. Speaking at a panel session during the energy conference, Shitti said metering alone will not solve the issues in the electricity industry as the theme; “Can Meters Save NESI?,” which he spoke on suggests.
He, however, surmised that the MAP scheme will help new investors bridge the liquidity gap in the power sector.
“We do not want to over emphasise the issue of metering as we know that even when you meter every customer there would be situations whereby there are leakages in the system.
“We also believe that this will crate opportunity for new investors who will come in with fresh funds into the industry to help solve the challenge of liquidity. What we are trying to do with this scheme is to ensure that the industry is to be able to access cheap funds that can help it grow and as well providing qualitative products.”