Smart Metering and informative billing
In 2012, the starting signal was given for the introduction of smart meters in Austria with the ‘Ordinance on the Introduction of Intelligent Meters’ (IME-VO). By the end of 2019, at least 95 % of all Austrian electricity customers must be provided with a smart meter. The switchover will take place in phases: it should cover 70% of all customers by the end of 2017. This timeframe is very ambitious and represents a great challenge for network operators. Extensive reporting obligations to the authorities were therefore imposed. As of December 2015, approximately 456,000 metering points were equipped with a smart meter (there are approximately 6 million metering points in total). This corresponds to a degree of coverage of approximately 7.4% (in 2014 it was 4.9 %).The major roll-out projects tend to be carried out by large network operators or public utilities. According to the companies, the main obstacle to the smooth and rapid introduction of smart meters is the legal framework, which at present is still lacking or is insufficiently clear. This applied sin particular to clarifications in the areas of data protection and measurement and calibration. Overall, it may be noted that in the reporting year 2015 (as of December 2015) the majority of system operators concerned did commence activities by way of preparations for calls for tender, but these are only in their initial stages. The regulatory authority, E-Control Austria, is assuming that the projects - especially in the case of large companies - will be put out to tender in 2016 at the latest and should then be commenced soon afterwards.
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