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Electricity theft costs JD60m annually

By Mohammad Ghazal - Jun 11,2015 - Last updated at Jun 11,2015

AMMAN — Electricity theft costs Jordan around JD60 million annually and measures are being taken to address the issue, said a senior official at a regulatory body.

About 2-3 per cent of power lost from the electricity system is classified as non-technical loss, which is mainly theft, said Energy and Mineral Resources Regulatory Commission Chief Commissioner Farouq Hiari in remarks to The Jordan Times on Wednesday.

During a meeting to highlight the commission's achievements on the first anniversary of its establishment, Hiari added that authorities are very serious about addressing this issue, which represents a challenge to all power companies.

To curb thefts of electricity, the commission has placed law enforcement units at the country’s electricity companies that regularly conduct inspections on any violations against the grid, he said.

“During the coming period, these units will conduct several raids on several areas across the country to detect violations and take necessary legal measures,” he said.

Several measures are being taken as well to face electricity thefts, he said.

Some power companies started a pilot project in Aqaba and in Ramtha to install smart meters that help detect violations on the grid.

“The installation of smart meters will contribute significantly to putting an end to electricity theft,” he said.

He added that the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources has recently introduced a by-law under which power companies were given a period of seven years to replace the current meters with smart ones.

“These pilot projects are just the beginning; at a later stage the projects will scale up to cover the rest of the country,” said Hiari.

According to Hiari, the commission dealt with 3,547 cases of electricity theft over a one-year period.

He added that there were court rulings in 10 of the cases.

 

At the meeting, Hiari reviewed the commission’s plans and strategies in the fields of mining, nuclear, oil shale and electricity. 

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