The Republics of Benin, Niger and Togo owe Nigerian Government the sum N29.9bn for the electricity supplied to them from January to September of the year 2019 according to the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC).
The Nigerian country through its electricity transmission company, supplies power to these countries, tagged as international customers to the Nigerian power sector.
Niger’s power firm, Societe Nigerienne d’electricite, failed to pay a total invoice of N3.01bn it received in the first quarter of 2019; N3.69bn in Q2; and N4.1bn in Q3.
Also, Communaute Electrique du Benin, a power firm owned by Togo and Benin, did not pay N9.74bn for the power supplied to it in Q1; N7.16bn in Q2; and N2.27bn in Q3.
This was contained in the NERC quarterly report released on Friday that the international customers made no payment for the total outstanding debt in Q3.
The commission said the Nigerian Government will continue to engage the government of the said countries benefitting from the export supply to ensure payment is made when due.
The commercial performance of the Nigerian electricity supply industry financial viability challenge has remained unabated the NERC revealed.
As presented in the report, a total invoice of N179.66bn was issued to the power distribution companies for energy received from the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Plc and for service charge by the Market Operator in Q3, but only a sum of N58.81bn was settled.
The government-owned NBET buys electricity in bulk from generation companies through Power Purchase Agreements and sells through vesting contracts to the Discos, which then supply it to the consumers, while the MO is an arm of the Transmission Company of Nigeria.
Although the Discos fully met the minimum remittance for MO, the average aggregate remittance performance to NBET was 32.73 per cent, with performance level ranging from 19.43 per cent (Jos) to 50.03 per cent (Eko), NERC said.
The commission said the above is slightly lower than the minimum remittance threshold approved in the orders on minimum remittance issued to all Discos in July 2019 with Enugu and Ikeja failing to meet their remittance obligation during the period.”
However, when enforcement of minimum remittance order was commenced, all Discos had since fully complied with their respective minimum remittance thresholds.
The regulatory body further stated that “Notwithstanding the slight progress recorded in the third quarter of 2019, the financial viability of the Nigerian electricity supply industry is still a major challenge threatening its sustainability,”