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More 88 lakh prepaid meters installation underway

  • Sun Online Desk
  • 12th March, 2020 10:07:29 PM
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More 88 lakh prepaid meters installation underway

An initiative of installing 88 lakh smart prepayment meters in phases across the country is in progress as the government planned to bring entire power consumers under the smart electric bill payment system.

Power distribution companies will set up 22, 26,600 smart prepayment meters in the financial year 2020-2021, an official familiar with the process told media.

According to official statistics, Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB) will set up 11,00,000 smart prepayment meters, Bangladesh Rural Electrification Board (BREB)- 2,50,000, Dhaka Power Distribution Company Limited (DPDC)- 76,600, Dhaka Electric Supply Company Limited (DESCO)-2,00,000, West Zone Power Distribution Company Limited (WZPDCL) – 2,00,000 and Northern Electric Supply Company Limited (NESCO) will install 4,00,000 smart prepayment meters by 2020-2021.

State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid said the government has a plan to bring all consumers under smart pre-payment metering system aimed at reducing system loss, pilferage and overbilling in power consumption across the country.

He said six distribution companies under power division will complete the installation of 20,20,000 smart prepayment meters within the current fiscal year (2019-2020).

“The government led by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has relentlessly been working to bring all citizens under power coverage as our generation capacity now reached 22,787 MW. We are also working hard to supply uninterrupted electricity to all,” Nasrul said.

Director General of Power Cell Engineer Mohammad Hossain said distribution companies installed 28,86,548 smart pre-payment meters across the country in October 2019, of which BPDB installed 11,32,083 smart prepayment meters, BREB 8,10,590, DPDC 4,35,552, DESCO 2,93,838, WZPDCL 1,95,591 and NESCO 18,894 smart prepayment meters.

“Power distribution companies have undertaken various projects to set up smart prepayment meters across the country to reduce system loss, pilferage and bill arrears,” he said.

The official data said government has decided to provide customers with an opportunity to procure smart prepayment meters from open market, as its demand is considerably being increased.

The decision will create liability for smart prepayment meters among consumers, create competitive markets and avoid huge investment in the sector, it said.

To this end, the government formulated a policy, which will help power consumers to procure quality smart prepayment meters from the open market, implementation of vending work, installation and smooth supply of necessary services.