Rio de Janeiro, Brazil --- (METERING.COM) --- August 11, 2008 - Metering International’s 6th Metering, Billing/CRM Latin America gets under way today in the “Cidade Maravilhosa” (Marvelous City) of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, with what is expected to be a record attendance to review next generation metering solutions for the region’s utilities.

Continued growth in the demand for power, along with rapidly rising energy prices and the quest for security and sustainability of supply are bringing new challenges to utilities in Latin America. Energy efficiency and demand response, so far largely unexploited in the region, are becoming increasingly important, and there is ongoing need for revenue protection and the reduction of non-technical losses. As a result utilities in the region – like their counterparts in North America and elsewhere – are increasingly looking to advanced metering infrastructure as a solution, alongside the longer established AMR and prepayment.

Program highlights include a pre-conference workshop on revenue protection, high level panel discussions on new advances in metering, billing and customer management in Latin America and finance and regulations for improved metering systems, and sessions on strategic and regulatory issues, the current metering context, meter communications and the development of a “smart” industry.

Recognizing the growing need for sustainable water supply in the region, for the first time the event will include a dedicated track on water metering, focusing on issues such as submetering in condominiums, resource management, and water metering technologies.

The host utilities for the event are Ampla, CEDAE and CEG, which are responsible respectively for electricity, water and gas supply in sectors of the city and Rio de Janeiro state. CEG will also be hosting a site visit for delegates to its control center and technical laboratories, including the metering, calibration and quality control labs.

More than 600 delegates and visitors are expected to attend the event over the next three days.