Telenor to Supply Pakistan with Smart Meters

By Frank Griffin January 06, 2014

In developed countries smart meters are primarily designed to provide better customer service for the consumer while at the same time offering valuable information to utility companies. However, in developing countries utility companies face different sets of challenges that require them to use smart meters to address issues that are not as widespread in developed countries.

In Pakistan, the goal of implementing smart meters to the grid is primarily to catch theft. It is estimated the country loses around 80 billion Rupees or $758,293,600 every year related to electricity theft. In order to minimize the loss, the Lahore Electric Supply Company (LESCO) is planning to use Telenor technology to deploy 17,000 Automated Meter Reading (AMR) solutions, making it the largest provider in the country.

The smart meters will be deployed in five cities across Pakistan including Islamabad, Hyderabad, Multan, Lahore and Peshawar. According to the CEO of LESCO Saleem Akhtar, the deployment of smart meters can decrease electricity theft anywhere from 3 to 10 percent, saving more than 30 billion Rupees annually or $284,370,000.

Telenor will provide the utility companies in Pakistan with innovative services using machine-to-machine (M2M) technology and green solutions. With the Telenor solution LESCO and other utility companies will be able to use advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) with automated meter reading (AMR) with real-time or near-time two way communication. This will allow the company to read the meter both locally and remotely on demand, with the possibility of cutting the power of the offenders if it is necessary.

The deployment of the smart meters is a collaboration effort between United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and LESCO, which has deployed the smart meters in two-locations to determine the viability of the technology not only to combat theft, but to also improve the antiquated electrical grid in Pakistan.

According to Abdul Rehman, Director Operations at Lesco, one of the installations has resulted in a 10 percent decrease in losses due to electricity theft. The pervasive nature of electricity theft was made clear when LESCO examined 6,000 customers, resulting in 1,250 reports and 700 arrests.

Telenor Pakistan is one of the largest mobile data connectivity providers in the country, which includes dedicated M2M based connectivity solutions across the country.

Telenor was founded in 1855, and the group is one of the largest mobile operators in the world with more than 160 million mobile subscriptions and mobile operations in 12 markets.

"Automated Smart meters are going to be instrumental in enhancing working efficiencies of energy companies while consumers will also benefit from this with better load management in the long run," said Irfan Wahab Khan, chief marketing officer for Telenor Pakistan.

Edited by Ryan Sartor

IoTevolutionworld Contributing Writer

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