Papua New Guinea: Electric Utility ICT Strategy Roadmap Technical Assistance

The Grantee invites submission of qualifications and proposal data (collectively referred to as the “Proposal”) from interested U.S. firms that are qualified on the basis of experience and capability to execute technical assistance for the proposed deployment of a smart metering system, communications network components and all major sub-systems comprising its information and communications technology infrastructure (the “Project”) in Papua New Guinea.

Project Background

PNG Power Limited is currently experiencing major operational issues that must be addressed before it can deal with the longer-term obstacles to its future growth. The primary operational issue is electricity theft. It is estimated that PNG Power Limited loses approximately 20 to 30 percent of their total revenue each year due to illegal and unpaid connections. In Port Moresby, where nearly 50 percent of PNG Power Limited’s power is consumed, the company estimates that 1 in 4 consumers are not paying for the electricity they use.

The solution to this pressing problem is to apply ICT solutions in the company’s power delivery network that will reduce and eventually eliminate these illegal connections. PNG Power Limited announced in 2019 that they planned to roll-out smart meters throughout their network. However, the company does not presently have the ICT infrastructure to make use of these meters. In order to deliver on this promise, the company will have to either build their communications network or connect to external networks. Similarly, there are serious database problems such as knowing who their customers are and what services are being purchased. The company’s human resource systems also require updating to make sure they keep track of their employees, and the company could benefit from systems that would promote better accounting of equipment inventory.

About the Grantee

PNG Power Limited (“PPL”) is a fully corporatized, state-owned enterprise, responsible for the generation, transmission, distribution and retailing of electricity for the entire country. The company presently has 2,000 employees, 33 customer service centers and approximately 152,000 customers, 138,000 who are pre-paid retail customers and 14,000 post-paid business customers. All of PPL’s shares are held in trust for the government by Kumul Consolidated Holdings Limited, (“KCH”), an independent public business corporation, which is mandated to own and manage all the government’s non-petroleum and non-mining commercial assets.

About the Technical Assistance

The requested TA will provide PNG Power Limited with a roadmap to implement a fully integrated ICT platform for the utility. In addition to providing PNG Power Limited with necessary technical analysis and strategy to improve immediate operations, the ICT roadmap will also provide a solid foundation to build upon for their future electrification efforts. This process would be supported by a complete and careful assessment of all the systems and technologies that PNG Power Limited is using at present and provide recommendations that are right sized for the market.

The U.S. firm selected will be paid in U.S. dollars from a $756,175 grant to the Grantee from the U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA).

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Papua New Guinea: Electric Utility ICT Strategy Roadmap Technical Assistance

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