Equatorial Group takes over power distribution service in Amapá; see questions and answers | Amapá

At a press conference, the new board presented the actions planned to improve and optimize the service in the state, which in recent years has suffered from constant interruptions in supply, tariff hikes and, in November 2020, faced a 22-day energy crisis with the blackout.

Among the investments, the Equatorial group announced investments of R$ 1 billion over the next 5 years, in addition to the inclusion of 12 thousand families in the social tariff for discounts on the electricity bill and social initiatives for the donation of refrigerators and discounts on appliances.

CEA Equatorial Energia Board at a press conference — Photo: John Pacheco/g1

Equatorial will take over the service in Amapá in the 16 municipalities, serving more than 860,000 inhabitants in 209 consumer units along 59,000 kilometers of distribution lines.

At the press conference, company representatives responded about the service’s operation in the state, hiring servers and investments in technology and network maintenance.

O g1 gathered the main questions answered by the CEO of Equatorial Energia, Augusto Almeida, the president of CEA Equatorial, Augusto Dantas and the former president of CEA Marcos Pereira.

Equatorial explained that the readjustment is defined by the National Electric Energy Agency (Aneel) and that it takes place annually at the end of November. The calculation assesses economic issues.

“The value is naturally defined by Aneel, the regulatory agency. It takes the inflation data to be able to define the adjustment. It should happen in the next few days, we still don’t have the numbers, but regardless of the state CEA or the Equatorial CEA, it will happen,” detailed Augusto Dantas.

How to reduce recurrent episodes of power outages?

The company talks about modernization and investments, which should reach R$ 1 billion over the next 5 years.

The objective is to replace equipment and provide more security for the lines, as well as the installation of an automated system to identify damage to the network almost in real time.

“We are going to work with sensing the network, automating the network, allowing that when a large block of cargo leaves, we already know about it and send a field team to carry out the necessary normalization”, completed the president.

Dantas also added other investments in the company that will guarantee the modernization of the systems, starting with the construction of a new Operations Center with the capacity to geo-reference 100% of customers, allowing the identification of faults automatically.

“The substation will be able to be operated via satellite, we are going to put reclosers in the distribution network to make remote maneuvers. Replacement of insulators, pruning so the network does not touch the trees. Isolate the network where it is allowed,” he added.

In relation to consumer default, which reaches R$300 million. Will there be facilities for negotiation?

Initially, according to the president, the objective is to seek the consumer to negotiate, with the objective that the value of the installment and the energy bill fit within the family’s budget.

“We are preparing a great negotiation fair for the population to look for us, the service channels, providing opportunities. The other processes will follow with the other resolutions: the warning, giving the period of 15 days, so that the consumer through our channels service, look for a way to get regularized”, he explains.

How to face the energy loss that reaches 49%, through irregular connections and electricity theft?

The company is going to carry out a major campaign to exchange old meters and install new devices, where there is the consumer who uses it, but does not pay for the electricity supply. According to Dantas, it will be a fight against the so-called “cat”.

“We have burnt-out meters, people who divert energy, neighborhoods where the CEA did not make the investment to take energy and which was removed clandestinely”, explains the manager.

How are CEA employees? Will there be hiring of new workers?

According to the state government, former CEA manager, the concession guaranteed the transfer of jobs from the current workforce. Equatorial plans to further increase the number of contractors.

“We expect an immediate hiring of 1,500 jobs, electricians, meter readers, attendants, assistants, so that we can advance in the supply of energy. CEA workers are with us, we are carrying out assessments and anyone who wants to be part of this beautiful transformation is welcome.” completed the president.

Will reading, billing and expiration days be maintained?

The company said it will continue with readings at homes on the usual dates, being taken by more than 130 teams across the state.

About the expiration date, the current ones follow, but the consumer will have the autonomy to choose the day of discharge.

The new dealership also announced the expansion of customer service with a virtual assistant where the following services can be done via WhatsApp:

  • 2nd copy of invoice;
  • Payment code;
  • Debit consultation;
  • Report power outages;
  • Reconnection;
  • Low income social tariff register.

Register in the social tariff, how does it work?

Low-income families are entitled to a discount on their electricity bill. This is called the social tariff, which is valid only for consumers registered in the Single Registry (CadÚnico) or who are beneficiaries of the Continuous Cash Benefit (BPC).

“By crossing the database of the Social Assistance department and ours to include another 12 thousand families in the social tariff. We are going to go from 18 thousand to 30 thousand. We want to reach 55 thousand families receiving this benefit by the end of the year” , declared the CEO of Equatorial Energia, Augusto Almeida.

The social tariff discount is given according to the monthly consumption of each family, which varies from 10% to 65%, up to the consumption limit of 220 kWh (kilowatt-hours per month), as shown in the table below:

Social tariff for those in CadÚnico and BPC — Photo: Economy g1

To be entitled to the social tariff, consumers need to look for the headquarters of Equatorial, the same as the CEA, in their cities and prove that they fit the requirements to be entitled to the discount.

However, as of January 2022, the inclusion will be automatic for those who are already in the Single Registry or receive the Continuous Cash Benefit.

In other words, consumers will not need to look for distributors to request a discount on their electricity bill.

To be entitled to the social tariff, one of the family members must appear at the electricity distributor that serves their residence and present the following information and documents:

  • Name, CPF and identity card or other official identification document with photo, and the Administrative Registry of Indigenous Birth (RANI), in the case of indigenous people;
  • Code of the consumer unit to be benefited;
  • Social identification number (NIS) and/or the Family Code in the Single Registry or the Benefit Number (NB) in case of receipt of the Continuous Cash Benefit (BPC);
  • Submit the report and certificate signed by a medical professional, only in cases of families with continued use of devices.

The Ministry of Citizenship informs that, on a monthly basis, it provides access to the CadÚnico and BPC databases for the National Electric Energy Agency (Aneel) and local electricity distributors, responsible for coordinating and implementing the social tariff.

Distribution of refrigerators, why? and who will be prioritized?

The refrigerators made available in the action have the ‘A’ seal for energy efficiency from the National Electric Energy Conservation Program (Procel).

This means that they can be up to 40% more economical compared to an old refrigerator, in poor condition and with deteriorated sealing rubbers.

To compete, the customer must have a refrigerator in poor condition, but working, be the holder of the energy bill and carry ID and the last bill of electricity paid to register.

“We are bringing to 1,000 refrigerators. They will be needy, low-income families. We are going to sit down with city halls to see the best way to ensure that these refrigerators reach these families in December,” concluded the president.

Who is Grupo Equatorial Energia?

The Equatorial Group is an important holding company operating in the Brazilian electricity sector and currently has concessions for the service in 6 states in the North, Northeast and South regions.

The company’s coverage is 24% of the national territory, 12% of the Brazilian population and 7% of the national market.

This year, Equatorial also won the concession for basic sanitation services in Amapá, replacing the state’s Water and Sewage Company (Caesa).

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