Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic — (METERING.COM) — November 3, 2008 – A $40 million loan has been approved by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) to assist the three Dominican power companies, Edenorte, Edesur and Edeste, to rehabilitate their distribution networks and reduce losses.

The program, with a total cost of $52.7 million, comprises two components, rehabilitation of the networks and social programs for customers and communities. Under the rehabilitation, in selected areas there will replacement and installation of meters, insulated cables and distribution transformers, and new connections for “irregular” customers. For large customers other technologies will be employed, including automatic meter reading, and in the most difficult areas equipment to detect theft will be installed. In the social program component the companies will work with NGOs to build trust with communities with high levels of illegal electrical connections and non-payment in order to legitimize their work in reducing losses and improving the quality of supply.

The program is expected to help improve the financial situation of the utilities and increase energy efficiency in the Dominican Republic. It will also promote the rational use of electricity, leading to savings in generation and lower greenhouse gas emissions.

The executing agency for the program is the Corporación Dominicana De Electricidad.