NERC ORDERS DISCOS TO REFUND CUSTOMERS IN FORM OF ENERGY CREDITS

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The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has issued a new directive that empowers customers to claim refunds in the form of 'Energy Credit' spanning three years from Electricity Distribution Companies (DISCOs). 

This directive is in strict compliance with the national mass metering regulations of 2021.

Order No: NERC/2023/001, signed by Chairman Sanusi Garba and Commissioner Dafe Akpeneye, responds to the recent surge in prices for both single-phase and three-phase meters. 

It also emphasizes that prepaid meters typically have a lifespan of ten years.

Under this directive, DISCOs are mandated to reimburse customers using energy credits, spreading the meter cost over a maximum period of 36 months. 

This rule applies to customers who have made upfront payments for meters since the inception of the MAP framework in 2018.

Following a financial evaluation of DISCOs, NERC has revised the reimbursement period, aligning it with the ten-year lifespan of electronic meters. 

The order additionally incorporates MAP meters into the Regulatory Asset Base (RAB) of DISCOs.

Customers who have purchased prepaid meters under the MAP scheme will receive refunds in the form of energy credits, calculated based on the prevailing tariffs at the time of meter usage. 

Even if a customer does not use energy for some months, any accumulated energy credits will be refunded when they next use their prepaid meters. Postpaid customers who have acquired meters through the MAP scheme will also benefit from rebates.

Furthermore, DISCOs are mandated to provide monthly reports to NERC, outlining the total monetary value of refunds distributed to customers via energy credits. 

The order also specifies that all meters installed under the MAP framework will be considered part of the Regulatory Asset Base (RAB) of DISCOs during the next significant tariff review.
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