• NERC cancels estimated billings for unmetered customers.
  • The regulator also capped energy billing for unmetered R2 and C1 customers.
  • The capping of estimated bills took effect from February 20th, 2020.

The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has relaxed the country's Estimated Billing Methodology Regulation - a basis for computing the consumption of unmetered customers by the Distribution Companies (Discos).

Estimated Billing Methodology is a 2012 regulation of the electricity commission empowering distribution companies to charge unmetered customers based on the measurement of the voltage and current on the Customer premises for a specific period (between one to twenty-four hours) during normal operation and the application of the formula provided hereunder for estimation of monthly Consumption.

Nigeria's electricity billing cap (NERC)
Nigeria's electricity billing cap (NERC)

In a stated issued on Tuesday, February 25th, 2020, NERC said all unmetered R2 and C1 customers should not be invoiced for the consumption of energy beyond the cap stipulated by it.

The capping of estimated bills took effect from February 20th, 2020.

The commission classified the basis of consumption into Residence (RS), Commercial (C1), Industrial, and Special.

“Discos shall ensure that all customers on tariff class A1 in their franchise areas are properly identified and metered by 30 April 2020. While all unmetered RS and C1 customers shall not be invoiced for the consumption of energy beyond the cap stipulated in schedule 1 of this order.

“All R1 customers, who by definition consume no more than 50 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of energy per month, shall continue to be billed at N4 kWhr and a maximum of N200 per month unless otherwise amended by an order of the commission.

Prof. James Momoh, the Chairman of NERC. [thisdaylive]
Prof. James Momoh, the Chairman of NERC. [thisdaylive]

“Any customer on such higher tariff classes not metered beyond April 30, 2020, shall remain connected to supply without further payment to the Disco until a meter is installed on the premises under the framework of Meter Asset Provider (MAP) regulations or any other financing arrangement approved by the commission,” the statement added.

The commission said that the energy cap prescribed by the commission shall only apply to R2 and C1 customers, adding that all other customers on higher tariff classes must be metered by Discos no later than April 30, 2020, failing which these customers are not liable to pay any estimated bill issues by Discos.