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Monday, March 29, 2010

6,400 poor families have electricity

(KPL) Over 6,400 poor families access to electricity under the Electricity Extension Project, financed by the World Bank and AusAID.

The project, which began in 2008, focuses on helping the poor families in 37 districts of seven central and southern provinces to gain an access to electricity, by investing 700,000 kip in electricity installation of a poor family. Every family who has been installed with electricity network is required to repay 20,000 kip a month to the project and the repayment will be over in 35 months, said Head of the Electricity Extension Project, Mr. Yankham Duangsavanh.

So far the project has been implemented in 249 villages or 95% of its target. And the project is expected to complete the electricity installation for the poor families in seven central and southern provinces soon before starting its activities in nine northern provinces. Under this programme, Luang Prabang will be the first among the northern provinces to have it implemented.

The Electricite du Laos in cooperation with the Electricity Extension Company held a seminar on electricity supply to people in rural areas. The seminar took place in Luang Prabang province on March 23.

Present at the event were Director of the Electricite du Laos, Mr. Boun-oum Sivanpheng and relevant officials from northern and southern provinces.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Nam Ngum 2 dam starts storing water for electricity generation

(KPL) The Nam Ngum 2 dam started storing water to generate electricity after its construction works had completed three months ahead of schedule.

The closing ceremony of the turbine channel to store water in the Nam Ngum 2 dam, in Hom district, Vientiane province, was held on 18 March.

Taking part in the event were Standing Deputy Prime Minister Somsavat Lengsavad, Minister of Energy and Mining, Mr Soulivong Daravong, and other high-ranking officials including specialists of Nam Ngum 2 and representatives of Electricite du Laos.

The Nam Ngum 2 dam is one of many mega hydropower construction projects built in Laos. The construction project initiated in 2006 which was scheduled to be over in December 2010 but the construction work was finished ahead of the set plan for three months. Originally the construction is scheduled to be over in March 2011.

The store-up of water for generating electricity would start in the next five months. It is also expected that additional rainfalls will raise the water level in the Nam Ngum 2 reservoir, which will be high enough for generating electricity.

The Nam Ngum 2 dam is expected to generate electricity on a trial basis in the coming August and in the next four months (upcoming December 2010). The dam will operate its full strength to generate electricity and start distributing electricity into the transmission lines.

The Nam Ngum 2 dam, operated by the Nam Ngum 2 Company Ltd, which has main shareholders including the leading electricity supplier company in Laos "Electricite du Laos" and the Southeast Asia Energy Ltd (the main shareholder of this company was the Ch Karnchang Public Company Limited of Thailand).

The Nam Ngum 2 dam has a generating capacity of 615 megawatts and was built by Ch Karnchang ( Laos) Ltd.

Operating under a concession of 27 years and six months starting this year end, the dam will generate approximately 2,218 gigawatts hour, which will be sold to the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (Egat).

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Koudkhae villagers enjoy electricity

(KPL) Electricity has come to Koudkhae village, Outhoumphone district, Savannakhet province. It came in the middle of February 2010. Seventy-five households, albeit only 64 per cent of all the households of this village, enjoyed access to electricity.
A ceremony to commemorate this event was held under the presidency of Mr Thonkeo Phouttha Kaiyalath, Head of Energy and Mining of this province and he formally handed over the electrical infrastructure to the chief of Koudkhae village, Mr Boualoi. Koudkhae village, a remote village, had 124 households, 140 families, a population of 821 and 409 of them were female. Outhoumphone district had 106 villages, 96 of them had access to electricity and the percentage was high, 90.5.

Feasibility study on Nam Mo 1 hydropower

(KPL) The Vietnam's Electricity (EVN) International Joint Stock Company signed a memorandum of understanding on conducting a feasibility study on Nam Mo 1 hydropower project with the government of Laos in Vientiane Capital last week.
The signatories to the document were the Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment, Mr. Thongmy Phommisay, and the Director of the EVN International Joint Stock Company, Mr. Nyuyen Thanh Huan.
The signing ceremony was witnessed by Director General of the Mines� Energy Promotion and Development Department of the Ministry of Energy, Mr. Saypaseuth Phomsoupha, Deputy-Governor of Xiengkhouang province, and representative of both sides.
The Nam Mo 1 hydropower project, worth US$ 105 million, is located in Xiengkhouang province, northern Laos, with a generation capacity of 62 KW.
Under the study of Nam Mo 1 will be an 18-month survey. After completing the construction of this dam, the electricity will be for local consumption and export to Vietnam.

Laos to join the Earth Hour on 27 March

(KPL) Laos will eagerly take part of the upcoming celebration of the Earth Hour on 27 March 2010, to reduce global warming.
The activity is to raise awareness of environment protection to the students and officials in the public and private sectors understanding on safe energy and reduction in the emission of greenhouse gases.
The move was come out at a seminar on safe energy and reduction in the emission of greenhouse gases, which was organised by the Environment Department at the International Cooperation Training Center, Vientiane on 17 March.
Mme. Khempheng Pholsena, Minister to the Prime Minister's Office and the Director General of the Water Resource and Environment Administration said that the seminar on Safe Energy and reduction in the emission of greenhouse gases is a part of activity to mark the upcoming Earth hour at the end of next week-end.
The earth hour is encouraging the public and private sectors to join the campaign of saving energy and reducing global warming, which it caused the climate change, she said.
She added that the first earth hour was taken place in Sydney, on 31 March 2007, approximately 2.2 million people joining the campaign by turning off their lights for the earth hour day. And then the campaign has spread to 370 cities worldwide.
Over 1 billion population in 4, 000 cities in 88 countries worldwide joined the campaign of turning off light for the earth hour day.
Some 92 countries are going to join the campaign of earth hour day this year, in which Laos is the 92nd rank. As we have well known, the climate change is a big problem and affected living things on the planet, particular biodiversity, increased global temperature and drought, the increased number of insects as well as disease epidemic among population worldwide that affects current agriculture production, Mme Khempheng stated further.
Presently, the people worldwide encounter the natural disaster tend to keep severely intensifying, so all international community should join hand in hand to save the world by reducing in the emission of greenhouse gases.
Lao Government pays always attention to the implementation of socio-economic development is based on the sustainable environment protection and sustainable exploration of natural resources.

Nam Theun 2 begins sale of electricity to Thailand

Nam Theun 2, the largest hydroelectricity power plant in Laos, has begun exporting electricity to Thailand, creating a new major source of revenue for the landlocked nation.

The Nam Theun 2 Power Company yesterday announced it had begun the supply of 1,000MW of electricity to the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand at commercial rates.
Four export production turbines at the 1,088MW power plant in the central province of Khammuan began full generation on Monday, the company said.
The sale of electricity generated by the plant to Electricite du Laos (EDL), a state-owned enterprise, has also begun.

Construction of the US$1.4 billion hydropower plant began in 2005. It was scheduled to begin delivering power to the Lao grid and for export to Thailand in December 2009. However, technical problems caused full operation to be postponed until early this year.
The Nam Theun 2 hydropower plant is considered to be a major source of revenue for the Lao government.

According to a report from the Nam Theun 2 Power Company, the plant is expected to generate average annual revenues of US$80 million for Laos in the form of taxes, royalty fees and dividends over the 25-year life of the concession. Over the period of operation, revenue will amount to more than US$2 billion.

The Lao government has made a firm commitment to spending these earnings on poverty elimination.

Investment in the power plant was made in the build-operate-transfer format, under which the shareholders will operate the facility for 25 years and then transfer it to the Lao government.
The shareholders are Electricité de France (35 percent), the government-owned Lao Holding State Enterprise (25 percent), the Electricity Generating Public Company of Thailand (25 percent), and the Italian-Thai Development Public Company of Thailand (15 percent).

Ministry of Energy and Mines officials say project developers plan to train Lao staff to replace foreign workers in managing the company and power plant. This will enable the government to operate the plant in 25 years' time.

Three other hydropower plants - the Nam Ngum 2 and Nam Lik 1-2 in Vientiane province, and the Nam Nhone plant in Luang Namtha and Bokeo provinces - are expected to start commercial operation this year.

At present, Laos has 10 hydropower plants that are operational. Another 17 plants are in the planning stage and 45 more are undergoing feasibility studies.
The government plans to turn Laos into the “battery of Asean” when the planned hydropower plants come on line in the future.

By Ekaphone Phouthonesy (Latest Update March 18, 2010)

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

ADB backs US$20m for transmission line expansion in north

(KPL) Almost 20,000 households in northern provinces will be accessible to electricity when the basic transmission line and power expansion network is installed thanks to the financial support from the Asian Development Bank (ADB).

The US$20million grant aid agreement was signed by the Deputy-Minister of Finance Mme Viengthong Siphandone and the ADB's Lao country Director Mr Gil Hong Kim, at the Ministry of Finance, last Wednesday.

The grant aid is under the sponsorship of the Great Mekong Sub-region-Northern Power Grid Project.

The project will help Laos to install the power transmission facilities in the northern part of the country to enable the export of energy to neighbouring countries.

It was the first time that the ADB helped in the expansion of electricity grid, which about 18,800 households in the north of the country would receive benefits.

Ms Viengthong said that the development of power grid system played an important role in the exercise of the national economic development plan.

The demand for electricity in the northern provinces is increasing rapidly in recent year due to the growth of population and investment in this region, said Ms Viengthong.

The fund would enable the state-owned enterprise Electricite du Laos to install a 115 KV transmission line and build substations and power distribution line, which runs 400 km long via Sayaboury, Phongsaly and Vientiane provinces.

These facilities would ensure sufficient supply of electricity to local people and manufacturing plants and services as well as improve living conditions of local people, particularly in the blowing up of poverty, she said.

The facilities will also help the government to provide electricity in areas that currently import electricity from neighbouring countries.

The project now plans to install the electricity line links to Thailand for sale.

The project would also receive more US$ 37.88milliion low interest loan from the Economic Development Cooperation Fund of the Republic of Korea (EDCF), which is expected to be inked in the near future.

However, this project will also help the government to meet its target of electrifying 70 percent of all households by 2010 and 90 percent by 2020.

Local company invests in dam construction in Borikhamsay

(KPL) A local construction company `Phongsubthavy` will conduct a feasibility study to invest in a new hydropower dam of Nam Nguiep in Mai district, central province of Borikhamsay.

A feasibility study of the construction of Nam Nguiep new hydropower dam, in Somsinh village, will be run for 18 months after signing a Memorandum of Understanding on study of economic and technical analysis and environment impact.

The signing ceremony held in Vientiane Capital, 25 February between Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment Thongmy Phommisay and Director of Phongsubthavy Road and Bridge Construction Company Phongsavath Phengsikeo. If the study completes, the Nam Nguiep hydropower plant with the generation capacity of 200 million kilowatts yearly or equivalent to one fifth of Nam Ngum dam 1 will be constructed.

The dam will be built about 25 metre high and 260 metre long and a 40 megawatts of turbine engine will also equipped with.

The initiative investment cost US$60 million will be the sole investment of Myanmar company.