The Managing Director (MD) of Sabrud Consortium, an indigenous electricity prepaid metre manufacturing company, Mr. Chiso Nwangwu, has commended the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) for the upward review of prices of meters.
Mr. Nwangu said the upward review would help local meter manufacturing companies to compete effectively and remain in business.
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Nwangu, who spoke to newsmen in Awka, said the increase in prices was long overdue as the former rates had become grossly inadequate in view of the prevailing economic realities.
He said the operators in the meter industry were having challenges due to the previous unrealistic pricing regime which made it difficult for them to break even.
He further said, “It is a welcome development, we have always called for upward review of the prices which have become obsolete, the increase is long overdue.”
According to him, NERC should encourage DisCos to patronise Nigerian meter manufacturers as against a situation where some of them relied on imported metres which he noted were not better than the local ones.
The industrialist added that: “This does not only hurt the local industry but also hurt the economy in general.
“DisCos should invite more MAPs who have the capacity to join their networks, this will enable them achieve the comprehensive metering target more effectively and speedily.
“Part of the challenge now is that those of them who rely on importation are stranded because of the global health crisis and inability of these meters to come into the country.
“Meanwhile, the imported meters are not better in quality.
“They are only suffocating the local industry and financing other economies.
“Our appeal as an industry is that government should roll out a special foreign exchange regime for us so that the cost of production can be cheaper, we can do better , as a matter of fact, to metering effort under MAP has been the best.”
It would be recalled that NERC had early this month announced that customers would from June 1, 2020, pay N44,896.17 instead of N36,991.50 for single-phase meter while three-phase meter customers will pay N82,855.19 instead of N67,055.85 .
The commission hinged the basis for the review on the effect of Foreign Exchange (Forex) challenge which, it noted, was affecting the cost of meter production.