By James Kon
A new smart metering solution combining water and electricity into a single account will be rolled out in homes and commercial premises in phases over the next five years.
The Unified Smart Metering System (USMS) will be implemented in some 250,000 households following a number of agreement signings between the government and government-linked companies (GLCs) at the Ministry of Finance and Economy (MoFE) building yesterday.
The USMS aims to encourage more efficient use of utilities, and serves as a step towards digitalising electric and water services to the population. The system has a two-way communication module to send and receive near real time data from the smart electrical meter using 3G/4G SIM Cards.
Consumers will be able to receive near real time information such as the available credit balance, perform instant top-ups and view top-up history, track usage pattern and manage their financial commitments.
Consumers will also be able to access the information via the self-care portal (www.usms.com.bn) and mobile applications.
Several agreements pushing the project forward were signed between the MoFE, the Department of Electrical Services and the Department of Water Services; and GLCs Berakas Power Company Sdn Bhd and DST Network Sdn Bhd.
Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office Pehin Datu Lailaraja Major General (Rtd) Dato Paduka Seri Haji Awang Halbi bin Haji Mohd Yussof was the guest of honour.
Also present were Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office and Minister of Finance and Economy II Dato Seri Setia Dr Awang Haji Mohd Amin Liew bin Abdullah, Minister of Development Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Muhammad Juanda bin Haji Abdul Rashid as well as Minister of Transport and Infocommunications Pengiran Dato Seri Setia Shamhary bin Pengiran Dato Paduka Haji Mustapha, Deputy Minister of Finance and Economy (Economy) Dato Seri Paduka Haji Khairuddin bin Haji Abdul Hamid and Deputy Minister of Finance and Economy (Fiscal) Pengiran Datin Seri Paduka Hajah Zety Sufina binti Pengiran Dato Paduka Haji Sani.