Umeme revenues increase

Power distributor Umeme Ltd has registered increased revenues in the last two years. Revenues are said to have increased from Shs860 billion in 2012 to Shs966 billion in 2013. Over the same period, its profit after tax has increased from Shs57 billion to Shs84 billion.Umeme attributes this to the increase in energy sales from Shs624.2 billion (2012) to Shs675.8 billion.It also attributes it to the additional capital investments and to the reduction of energy losses from 26 per cent (2012) to 24 per cent (2013).

Due to the additional revenues, Mr Charles Chapman, the managing director, said the company would be investing more in the electricity distribution network. “We have quite an old network. I would like to have conductors that are either underground or bundled. But it is vastly expensive to replace that network. It might cost $3 billion, which is not sustainable in the tariff. So the balancing act we have is threefold: restoration, expansion and convenience like prepayment,” Mr Chapman said yesterday when the company released its 2013 audited accounts.

The company will invest $129 million (Shs328.9 billion) this year up from $100 million. Part of the money will be spent on infrared for line inspection. Umeme will also invest in prepayment meters and on aerial bundled wire to reduce power losses from 24 per cent to 20.5 per cent by the end of the 2014.

For each percentage reduction, Uganda saves $3 million whereas for each percentage loss allowed in the power tariffs, power consumers compensate Umeme to the tune of $3 million. Altogether, these should mean fewer power outages.

SOURCE: Daily Monitor