Cabinet approves investment in new Bang Pakong power plant
The Cabinet yesterday gave its approval for the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (Egat) to go invest Bt33.94 billion to build a new power plant in Chachoengsao’s Bang Pakong district to ensure a stable and adequate power supply in Bangkok and its vicinity.
Construction is expected to be completed by 2019 and the investment to be recouped in 13 years.
Government Spokesman Sansern Kaewkamnerd said the power generated by the new plant would compensate for power-generating capacity that was lost after the 1,050-megawatt Bang Pakong Combined Cycle Power Plant 1-2 was terminated in 2014.
Egat says a new 1,300MW power generator will be installed in the same 50-rai (8-hectare) site of the terminated plant in Chachoengsao province and fuelled by natural gas, both from the domestic supply from the Gulf of Thailand and imported liquefied natural gas.
The new Bang Pakong Power Plant is scheduled to go into commercial operation in April 2019. The construction period is expected to be 34 months after approval from the National Environment Board.
Based on the 2016-19 investment plan for the power plant and power-transmission system, about Bt3.07 billion was spent last year, Bt10.99 billion will be spent this year, Bt13.48 billion in 2018 and Bt6.41 billion in 2019.
“The Cabinet acknowledged the Egat investment plan and allowed Egat to proceed with the plan to strengthen the country’s power stability,” Sansern said, adding that the authority was also asked Egat to use its own revenue to invest in this project “as the first priority”.
On another issue, the State Railway of Thailand (SRT) will propose to its board the terms of reference (TOR) for the 84-kilometre Hua Hin-Prachuap Khiri Khan double-track railway tomorrow on expectation for calling bids late this month.
This route is the first of a large-scale plan to improve Thailand’s railway system.
Anont Luangboriboon, SRT director and acting governor, said that the agency’s board would review the new TOR for the five double-track railway routes tomorrow.
Under the original TOR, the estimated value of the contract for the Hua Hin-Prachuap Khiri was Bt9.8 billion, but now the signalling system is to be awarded as a separate contract. That leaves only the contract for civil works and railways systems, valued at Bt8.5 billion.
This route’s TOR will be the prototype for the remaining four double-track projects.
“If the board approves the Hua Hin-Prachuap Khiri Khan route, a hearing will be opened before Songkran. If everything runs smoothly, the private sector will be invited to bid in late April and the winning bidder is expected [to be named] in June, as the government has targeted. Other projects will gradually follow,” Anont said.
Details on the establishment of a subsidiary for management of SRT assets will also be proposed to the board for the first time tomorrow, he said.
Voravuth Mala, SRT deputy governor, said consultants had submitted a report on how the asset-management subsidiary should be set up, but some issues had to be resolved before proposing it to the board.