Dar es Salaam, Tanzania --- (METERING.COM) --- June 1, 2009 - Prepayment is to be significantly expanded in Tanzania’s capital Dar es Salaam with the rollout of approximately 95,000 new prepay meters, while 1,800 remote meter reading are to be rolled out mainly to high value commercial and industrial customers.

One of the components of the Tanzania Energy Development and Access Expansion Project (TEPAD), which is just getting under way, the state-owned Tanzania Electric Supply Company (TANESCO) is to provide 60,000 prepayment meters as replacement for credit meters for existing customers. In addition a further 35,000 new customers will be provided with prepayment – 25,000 through grid expansion and 10,000 through the conversion of an existing low voltage distribution system to a high voltage configuration.

In addition, approximately 1,800 AMR solid state meters will be provided to the large customers and for installation on 33 kV and 11 kV distribution feeders in order to regularize these customers and to improve energy monitoring and auditing.

The objective of the TEPAD is to improve the quality and efficiency of electricity service provision in Dar es Salaam as well as the country’s two other main growth centers, Arusha and Kilimanjaro, and to establish a sustainable basis for energy access expansion.

The three components of the project are a grid component focusing on urgent investments in TANESCO’s transmission and distribution network, an off-grid component to support an institutional set-up for the newly established Rural Energy Agency (REA) and to develop and test new off-grid electrification approaches, and a technical assistance component for training and other capacity building activities.

The project should lead to an improvement in TANESCO’s operational efficiency with a reduction of losses, currently around 24 percent, to below 17 percent and an improvement in revenue collection, as well as an improvement in the quality of service. In addition a centralized call center is planned in Dar es Salaam to improve customer relations.

The TEPAD project, which is being supported by the World Bank, has a cost of US$111.5 million and is due for completion in early 2012.