Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 06/26/2012 -- BMI View: The major players in Asian power supply are clamouring to invest in Cambodia, with the result that huge capacity expansion can be expected from around 2015, as hydro, gas and coal-based schemes are brought into play. This will leave the country with plentiful spare generation, even if there are several years of 8-10% annual average demand growth. Neighbouring Vietnam, which will finance a number of power projects, plans to make use of Cambodia's potential export capability, as does Thailand.
Hydropower expansion is already underway and there is a long queue of potential projects with strong regional backing. Several are set to proceed, with a surge in hydro-based supply likely from around 2016. Domestic gas resources could contribute additional capacity, while the use of renewables is set to rise rapidly from a low base. New coal-fired stations are also in the planning stage, with Cambodia keeping a long-term eye on the possible use of nuclear energy.
Key trends and recent developments in the Cambodian electricity market include:
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- Thai power producer Ratchaburi Electricity Generating Holding (RATCH) has completed a feasibility study for the construction of a 1,800-megawatt (MW) coal power plant in the Cambodian province of Koh Kong. The company is set to carry out an environmental impact assessment study for the project after receiving support from Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen, according to Hun Sen's personal assistant, Eang Sophalleth (cited by the Phnom Penh Post). Electricity generated from the power plant would be sold to Cambodia at a 'special tariff' rate, with the remainder sold to Thailand. Koh Kong would be the largest power plant in Cambodia.
- During the period 2012-2021, Cambodia's overall power generation is expected to increase by an annual average of 27.1%, reaching 9.5TWh. Driving this growth is a planned new gas-fired scheme that should enter service during the forecast period. Hydroelectric generation growth is set to average 27.5% per annum, with non-hydro renewables raising their annual contribution by more than 12.2% between 2012 and 2021.
- In 2010-2019, some 2GW of power generating capacity is planned to be added to the network (based on state projections) and new transmission and distribution infrastructure is to be built. This is a particularly ambitious programme and BMI is assuming that installed capacity of an estimated 672MW in 2011 will have risen to 1.71GW by 2021.
- Following an increase in 2011 real GDP of an estimated 6.3%, BMI forecasts average annual growth of 6.8% between 2012 and 2021. The population is expected to rise from the current level of 14.3mn to 16.1mn during the period to 2021, and net power consumption looks set to increase from an estimated 1.56TWh in 2011 to 3.50TWh by 2021. During the period 2012- 2021, the average annual growth rate for electricity demand is forecast at 8.65%.
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