State Grid making it easier to plug in

Low voltage users are now being connected within days instead of months, saving them time and money under a new process implemented by the State Grid.

The State Grid Shanghai Power company has cut paperwork and other requirements to dramatically cut the time it takes for low-voltage users to connect to the network.

The streamlined system applies to customers whose demand is less than 160 kilowatts. Since March, about 2,452 companies have applied for free and been connected within about 10 days, compared with a wait of about two months under the old process.

Paperwork has been cut and the State Grid now maps the blueprint for the electrical layout instead of requiring customers to do it.

Pan Qin applied for a power connection for his company, Xingnan Industrial Corporation in Minhang District, on March 26.

“Based on my experience, it usually takes about two months before the power is connected,” Pan said. “But the State Grid called me the second day.”

His company was connected on April 12, without having to pay a fee or visit the utility's offices to discuss installation plans.

“It was all taken care of,” Pan said. “That was beyond my expectations.”

Businessman Wang Guowei applied for power for his interior decoration company on May 9 and was connected on May 14.

Customers like Wang and Pan say they could never have imagined that applying for — and getting — power connected could be so easy.

The streamlined procedure is part of the power company's strategy to become more proactive.

“From blueprinting to installation, the grid company did it all,” Pan said. He recalled he used to have to go to the power company several times to submit documents and construction plans.

This time all he had to do was wait for the grid engineers to tell him when the work would be done.

Saving companies more time is also saving them money. Pan said thanks to the quick connection, his company was able to start renovations a month earlier than expected.

The new policy has saved companies about 30.82 million yuan (US$4.8 million), the power company said.

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