Thai power producer RATCH to invest $1b in overseas plants in Indonesia, Laos, China

Construction News Laos


Thailand’s listed power producer Ratchaburi Electricity Generating Holding PCL (RATCH) plans to invest around $1 billion in power plants in Indonesia, Laos and China, a top official with the company said.

The company expects its aggressive investment to double its electricity production capacity to 8,000 megawatts, increasing its enterprise value from the current level of 124 billion baht to 188 billion baht by 2018.

Rum Herabat, the newly-appointed chief executive officer, said the company is looking at three main approaches to increase business. These include – exploring new investments, managing efficiency of main power plants and completing construction of new power plants as planned.

“We are looking  at opportunities to enter  joint ventures and acquisitions over the next two years,” he said.

The potential projects, for which the company is conducting feasibility studies and negotiation include, 2,000-MW JAWA7 in Indonesia, 400-MW Sekong 4 hydropower project in Lao PDR, seven solar farms projects for the public sector in Thailand  (with a combined capacity of 35 MW) and 2,000-MW power plant project in China.

JAWA 7 project, which is in partnership withThailand’s leading coal mine operator Banpu, is already undergoing the ‘consideration process’ by the Indonesian authorities, and is set to be finalised by the next month, said the company official.

In Laos, it has signed the joint development agreement with Lao World Engineering & Construction Co (LW) to develop Sekong 4 hydropower project. LW is a subsidiary of Thai World Power Group, which partnered with RATCH in Ratchaburi World Cogeneration power plant.

The company has also joined hands with the government agencies to bid for solar farm projects in the public sector. The seven proposed projects are located in the central and eastern regions of Thailand and have a total capacity of 35 megawatts.Of these, the company hopes that it will be able to win at least two projects.

Before the year ends, it expects to enter into the joint venture agreement for the power plant project in China. “This will mark our first step into China, which is a huge potential market,” Herabat added.

Currently, it has a combined electricity capacity of its key power plants of 4,558 MW. If all the investment plan is on track, the capacity will be raised to 8,000 MW in 2018.

At present, there are six projects under construction. Two projects – Hongsa power plant and Nava Nakorn Cogeneration power plant –  will commence operation next year. Two solar farms in Japan are scheduled to start operation in 2017, Xe Pian Xe Namnoy hydroelectric power project in 2019, while Berkprai Cogeneration power plant is under environment impact assessment.

Meanwhile, a 9.9-MW Songkhla Biomass power plant became operational recently. The total capacity of those projects is about 464.7 MW which can boost its enterprise value by 30.930 billion baht.