Business News of 2014-05-25

ECG rolls out new billing system

The Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) in the Ashanti Region has rolled out a new mechanised system of billing its Special Load and Tariff (SLT) customers.

The new system being introduced will help consumers in general to access, monitor and have true recordings of how they are being charged.

The new system involves the use of a modem and a sim card, just like it is with a mobile phone, to track consumption as well as give clients the opportunity to also crosscheck how they are charged.

If the roll out is completed by the end of this year, electricity bills for SLT customers, which also includes high energy consumers like factories, plants and institutions, will be placed online and payment made electronically.

According to the ECG, the process is to keep the company from physically recording and presenting bills to consumers and by that limit losses.

The Project Manager of Automatic Meter Reading (AMR), Engineer Mrs Sariel Etwire, said the new system had a web application for effective management of meters. She told some clients who were expected to be affected at a seminar in Kumasi yesterday that domestic consumers in Ashanti West and East had also been roped in on a pilot basis including sections in the Greater Accra Region.

She said the success of the domestic segment of the project would be dependent on the availability and access that individuals have to the Internet and their ability to track and monitor.

The engineer said individuals could access the facility on a website from their mobile phones.

The ECG is also to mount meters on public transformers. The metres will notify the company of power outages for it to address the losses.

The Regional Engineer for Ashanti West, Dr Kwabena Adomah, said the new mechanised billing system was such that consumers could easily ascertain that they were not charged and billed for any amount during power cuts.

‘The new system is to the advantage of the consumer because they only pay what they have used,’ he said.

The new system can record 250 SLTs within four hours as against the old system which takes weeks for the same number to be addressed physically.