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Sunday, January 20, 2008

EDL lights up in the north

After years in the dark, remote villages in Oudomxay province have finally been lit up by a new 115/22kV substation, which officially opened last month and is operating at full capacity.

Some 276 families in 10 villages of Xay district, Oudomxay province, and one village in Pakmong, Luang Prabang province, are benefiting from the project, according to a senior official from Electricite du Laos (EDL).

The 10 villages are the first of 95 in the province where EDL will be extending its network by the end of this year, said the site manager of the distribution section of the project, Mr Bounxana Phanhalath.

The installation of high and low-voltage transmission lines throughout Oudomxay province is part of EDL's project to provide an electricity grid for northern Laos .

The Northern Rural Area Power Distribution Project is being supported by the Nordic Development Fund and the Asian Development Bank.

This second phase of the project began in 2004 and will be completed this year, according to Mr Bounxana, and will cost a projected US$12 million.

Rural villages in Xay district previously used generators, while the main town of the province brought in electricity from Luang Prabang province.

The project plans to expand the electricity network to the provinces of Luang Prabang, Luang Namtha, Xayaboury, Xieng Khuang and Vientiane .

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