Sri Lanka begins AMI project to cut peak demand

In Asia, Sri Lanka’s Power Ministry last week announced the start of an automated metering infrastructure (AMI) programme.

The initiative is power utility Ceylon Electricity Board’s measure to reduce its peak power generation charges by shifting consumers to use electricity during off-peak hours, according to news source Lanka Business Online.

Power minister Ranjith Siyambalapitiya said: “If we can reduce the cost of a unit for off peak hours, it will motivate consumers to use power during off peak hours.”

The introduction of the AMI project follows the utility’s release of a tender for the supply of mobile handheld devices for meter reading during mid -December, 2015.

Sri Lanka AMI project – power tariffs

In September, 2015, Sri Lanka’s energy regulator approved a time-of-use tariff proposal submitted by the Ceylon Electricity Board, the largest electricity supplier in the country.

The Public Utilities Commission gave the green light to an optional tariff for domestic users who consume 3-phase, 30 A or above power supply, reported local media The Island.

The tariff consist of three separate time blocks –  off peak (2230-0530), day (0530-1830) and peak (1830-2230), separately metered and billed.

Ceylon Electricity Board charge 13 Rupees per kWh during off-peak hours, 25 Rupees during day hours and 54 Rupees during peak hours.

Electric vehicles in Sri Lanka

The utility said the development of the new tariff structure also aims to encourage consumers to use electricity during off-peak times for the purpose of charging electric vehicles.

In a bid to ease congestion and car emissions, Sri Lanka is offering a low rate of tax on electric vehicles.

During the Q3 of 2015 BMW Asia finalised a deal with an importer for its BMW i – the BMW sub-brand for its electric cars comprising the all-electric BMW i3 and BMW i8 plug-in hybrid sports car.

Metering & Smart Energy International reported that the distributor expects to begin retailing the cars in Sri Lanka by the end of 2015.

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Nicholas Nhede is an experienced energy sector writer based in Clarion Event's Cape Town office. He has been writing for Smart Energy International’s print and online media platforms since 2015, on topics including metering, smart grids, renewable energy, the Internet of Things, distributed energy resources and smart cities. Originally from Zimbabwe, Nicholas holds a diploma in Journalism and Communication Studies. Nicholas has a passion for how technology can be used to accelerate the energy transition and combat climate change.