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This study presents an efficient algorithm for optimisation of radial distribution systems by a network reconfiguration and capacitor allocation. An important outcome of the proposed approach is the cost savings related to purchasing new capacitor banks. Several reconfiguration and capacitor allocation methods can be found in the literature, but just a few approach the problem by a joint strategy. A modified, dedicated genetic algorithm-based approach has been successfully developed and implemented. It presents low computational effort and is able to find good quality configurations. Simulation results for a radial 69-bus and a radial, realistic 135-bus systems are presented and commented.