Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - ADB advises region to combine grids

ADB advises region to combine grids

ADB advises region to combine grids

Cambodia is expected to be able to produce about half the energy it needs by 2035, according to the Asian Development Bank (ADB), but the Kingdom – along with its neighbours – should also consider integrating their energy grids, which would bring about more competitive prices, as well as savings worth billions.

Cambodia is currently “not that far off” from meeting its projected energy self-sufficiency rate of 52 per cent in 2035, said Donghyun Park, a principal economist with ADB’s economics and research department. He was speaking at an ADB workshop yesterday on Asia’s energy outlook.

To boost its energy security, Cambodia and the rest of the Greater Mekong Subregion – Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, Laos and parts of China – should connect their electricity and natural gas grids, he said.

“This is a region that is very heterogeneous. Some countries are energy exporters, some are energy importers. So there are large gains from regional energy cooperation.” For example, $14 billion would be saved over 20 years by substituting hydropower for fossil fuels in the region, he said.

Another benefit is that the standardised pricings and regulations involved would result in a “more competitive energy market”, he added. High energy prices, as well as sudden power cuts, are common complaints among investors in Cambodia.

But Park said such market integration faces resistance. “It’s difficult because electricity [supply] tends to be a monopoly,” he said, and “to embrace new regulations and prices erodes the market power” for the supplier.

Electricite du Cambodge’s director general, Keo Rottanak, said last week that “ASEAN countries, including Vietnam, Thailand, Laos and others, are facing a shortage in their power grids”, presenting a challenge to regional integration.

MOST VIEWED

  • ‘Dire consequences’ from sanctions, warns AmCham

    American businesspeople in Cambodia have warned that any sanction against the Kingdom would have “dire consequences” that could push Cambodia even further into the arms of China. In a letter to US senators and representatives dated Monday, the American Chamber of Commerce Cambodia (AmCham) said

  • Protests planned in New York as Hun Sen to attend the UN

    Prime Minister Hun Sen will speak at the United Nations General Assembly in New York this week. But US-based supporters of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) plan to throw eggs at his car as part of a series of protests to coincide

  • CPP: ‘Behave or Sokha suffers’

    The ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) spokesman warned Kem Monovithya on Thursday that her attempt to damage “national reputation and prestige” would lead to her father, Kem Sokha, receiving even harsher punishment. Sok Eysan issued the warning as Monovithya, who is the court dissolved

  • Preah Sihanouk beach developments halted

    After receiving an order from Hun Sen, Minister of Land Management Chea Sophara led a team of experts and relevant officials to Sihanoukville to call a halt to the illegal development of a beach. The prime minister ordered the Prek Treng beach in Otres commune