The country’s entire power distribution system will be brought under prepaid metering system by 2021, said State Minister for Power and Energy Nasrul Hamid here on Sunday.
He made the announcement at a contract signing ceremony of Dhaka Power Distribution Company Ltd (DPDC) at Bidyut Bhaban.
The DPDC signed a contract with Bangladesh Diesel Plant Ltd, (BDPL), an equipment-manufacturing company, operated by the Bangladesh Army.
Under the contract, the BDPL will manufacture, supply and install 10,000 prepaid electricity metres in the DPDC’s Azimpur operation area of the city in the next one year.
As per the deal, 5,000 of the prepaid metres will be installed in the next three months, while the remaining during the rest of the period. The BDPL will also operate and maintain metres for the next five years under this pilot project.
Under the system, the customers will have to purchase prepaid smart card to get electricity and recharge it for continuous supply.
The DPDC will pay about Tk 12.96 crore to the BDPL to implement the project. So far, prepaid metres have been installed in some areas under Desco in the city, including Uttara and Mirpur.
The function was also addressed by Azimpur’s MP Haji Selim, Power Secretary Monowar Islam, DPDC chairman and Additional Secretary Tapos Kumar Roy, managing director Brig General (retd) Nazrul Hasan, BDPL’s chairman Lt Gen Anwar Hossain, and managing director Asif Ahmed Ansari.
Addressing the function, Nasrul Hamid said ensuring uninterrupted power supply and reaching power bill after the end of the month to consumers are the biggest challenges for the Power Ministry.
Appreciating the move for introducing prepaid metering system, he said this will play a major role in reducing the sufferings of power customer in their bill payments.
“Prepaid metres will help increase the revenue of the government as well,” he said adding that this is a turning point to improve the power consumers’ services.
Nasrul Hamid said the country has come out of load shedding hazard. “Now our concentration is on improving the customer service.”
He said the government has planned to generate 24,000 MW of electricity by 2024 of which a big portion will come from coal-fired power plant. “So, our major challenge will be to set up coal-fired power plants in future.”