Laos seeks to become regional hub for electricity transmission by 2025

Source: Xinhua| 2019-02-14 12:37:13|Editor: Liangyu
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VIENTIANE, Feb. 14 (Xinhua) -- Laos is developing a strategic plan to become the network center for a regional electricity transmission system by 2025.

According to local daily Vientiane Times on Thursday, Sichard Boudshakittilath, director of the Energy Management Department under the Lao Ministry of Energy and Mines, recently detailed the plan during a workshop on Business Lessons for Power Industry Improvement.

To move the strategy forward, in 2017 Laos signed a tripartite electricity-trading agreement with Thailand and Malaysia in which Laos would sell 100 MW of electricity to Malaysia using Thailand's power transmission network.

In 2014, the government of Singapore also expressed interest in buying electricity from Laos via transmission lines in Malaysia and Thailand.

Under this plan, Laos expects to export 14,800 MW of electricity annually to neighboring countries by 2025.

Sichard said within the next six years, Laos aims to export 9,000 MW of electricity to Thailand, 5,000 MW to Vietnam, 500 MW to Myanmar, 200 MW to Cambodia, and to distribute 100 MW to Malaysia.

Laos is currently in the process of setting up policy parameters and guidelines that will help modernize the energy industry.

A high quality, modern power grid that delivers renewable energy will be key to achieving many of its sustainable development goals for Laos.

A Ministry of Energy and Mines' report said Laos so far has 61 hydropower plants with an installed capacity of 7,207 MW which can collectively generate about 37,366 kWh per year.

An additional 36 hydropower plants are currently at various stages of construction. With an overall installed capacity of 4,184 MW, these plants will add another 20,892 kWh per year to the nation's power grid.

These projects are expected to be finished by the end of next year, meaning Laos will have about 100 hydropower plants.