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Oman improves power grid efficiency

Regulator calls on utilities to bring losses below 10% within two years.

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Oman, News

Utilities in Oman continue to cut back on losses and improve on the efficiency of power distribution and supply.

Losses within the Main Interconnected Zone (MIS) covering the northern part of the Sultanate slumped to 11.6% in 2014, their lowest level ever.

In fact system losses have been on a downward trend since 2005, when the power sector was fully restructured. Losses within the MIS reached a peak of 24.6% in 2004.

The Authority for Electricity Regulation Oman wants the three utilities serving the MIS - Muscat Electricity Distribution Company, Majan Electricity Company, and Mazoon Electricity Company - to make further efficiency gains and trim losses to 9% by 2017, Oman Daily Observer reported.

"Transmission, Distribution and Supply losses are a key performance indicator of efficiency and the Authority is pleased to note the continuing downward trend in losses across all three systems in Oman,” the Authority stated in its newly released 2014 Annual Report.

“With MIS losses now at 11.6 per cent (around 13 percentage points lower than the pre-restructuring level), further losses reductions are expected to occur at a lower rate.

“The Authority has set new losses targets for the MIS (distribution companies) as part of their price controls that (if achieved) would result in total MIS system losses of around 9 per cent by 2017."

Technical losses consist mainly of power dissipation in components such as transmission and distribution lines, transformers, and measurement systems.

Non-technical losses are caused by actions external to the power system and consist primarily of non-payment by customers, errors in accounting and record-keeping, and other such factors.

A separate gird serving Salalah in the far south of the country saw losses fall to 12.2% in 2014 from 14.1% a year earlier. The Rural Areas Electricity Company (RAECO), slashed system losses to 9.2% in 2014 from 10.8% a year earlier.

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