Thailand’s Amata B. Grimm Power Group plans to invest over Bt 50 billion (US$1.6 billion) to build 10 more power plants to cope with augmented foreign investment after the launch of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) in 2015.
The group, a subsidiary of the B. Grimm conglomerate, currently operates three power plants in Amata industrial estate in Chonburi and one in Amata City Bien Hoa industrial estate near Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Two more plants at Amata industrial estates in Chonburi and Rayong are under construction.
With the 10 additions, Amata B. Grimm Power will have a total of 16 electricity power plants.
Priyanart Sunthornvata, chief operating officer of Amata B. Grimm Power, said the independent power production group is ready to fulfill domestic industrial expansion given liberalised trade in the Southeast Asian region in 2015 and to alleviate the burden of the state-owned Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT) which supplies power to more than 800 industrial plants nationwide.
To satisfy foreign investor demand, the country’s transportation system, facilities, infrastructure and electricity supply must be ready, she said, insisting on the urgency to expand power plants to feed the industrial sector.
The group currently produces 500 megawatts (MW) of electricity under a Small Power Producer (SPP) purchase agreement with EGAT. The remaining electricity and steam are sold to about 300 plants in the three industrial estates.
The 10 new power plants are scheduled for completion in 2019. The 16 plants will have a combined production capacity of 2,000 mw to be supplied to over 800 industrial plants in six industrial estates, Ms Priyanart said.
EGAT Governor Suthas Patamasiriwat said domestic power consumption has been rising rapidly for several years, particularly in the industrial sector.
Thailand’s power demand reached its peak of 26,121MW on April 26 this year, an increase of 9.3 per cent from the previous year and it is predicted that the demand will be greater to 26,950 MW next year, he said, adding that the nation’s electricity demand will be as high as 53,000 mw in 2010.
The multiplied power demand has compelled the Energy Ministry to ensure sufficient power supply through several means: production by EGAT, purchase of power from domestic and foreign producers and encouraging production by independent and small power producers.