Power struggle: supply falls short

Despite ongoing energy projects, the country’s chronic electricity shortage is set to continue, Minister for Electric Power U Khin Maung Soe says. “Electricity generated from hydropower, natural gas and coal-fired plants cannot overcome the country’s chronic shortage of electricity,” he said at a press conference earlier this month.

The minister said Myanmar’s power consumption had increased annually by 15 percent and was predicted to hit 2370 megawatts this summer. It is forecast to rise to 2844MW in 2015 and about 3950MW in 2016.

Further, it is predicted that electricity demand will increase to 5686MW in 2020 and 19,216MW in 2030.

“Developing power plants takes time. We need to start now,” he said.

Currently, electricity supply for the entire country is handled from Ye Ywar power station.

“Inevitably, we will face electricity shortages again in 2020 and 2030 if we don’t start developing powerful generators now. We seriously need to implement new large-scale coal-fired and hydropower plants that could generate many megawatts of electricity to provide adequately for the future,” said the minister.

Agreement has already been reached for domestic us of half the electricity to be produced from hydropower projects now under way. “If we have a surplus, we will consider selling it overseas,” he said.

Source: Myanmar Times

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