New power plants to meet rising demand for energy

More energy: Ongkili (middle) being briefed on the plans for the ongoing Tanjung Bin Energy project development by the ministry’s chief secretary Datuk Loo Took Gee (third from left). Looking on are Malakoff Corp Bhd group managing director Datuk Seri Che Khalib Mohamad Noh (second from right), Energy Commission chief executive director Datuk Ahmad Fauzi Hasan (far right) along with Malakoff staff.

PONTIAN: The commissioning of new power plants between now and 2021 is expected to not only meet the surge in demand for power supply but also to strengthen the country’s reserve margin for electricity.

Energy, Green Technology, and Water Minister Datuk Seri Dr Maximus Johnity Ongkili said that the country’s reserve margin, which stood at 25% last year, would be able to help with any possible power supply shortage this year.

“The new power plants, which are gas, coal and hydroelectric, have a cumulative capacity of some 11,461MW, will be in operations by 2021.

“The new plants will replace the existing one whose concessions expire this year or in 2016. This is to meet the surge in demands for power supply at an average 3.1% annually for the period,” he said.

Ongkili told this to reporters during a press conference after visiting the Tanjung Bin Power Plant here on April 11.

He also said that the ministry had been closely monitoring the supply and demand situation for electricity and had been constantly reassessing the long-term development plans for the power plants nationwide to ensure smooth progression.

“The Power Commission has also issued an offer for existing plants of which concessions are expiring this year or 2016 to submit proposals for renewal,” he said in adding that the commission would extend the concessions if deemed necessary.

In efforts to meet the demands in Johor, Ongkili added that the projects that are ongoing or have been identified include the Tanjung Bin Energy with 1,000MW capacity, Pengerang Co-gen Plant (400MW to 600MW) and TNB-SIPP (1,400MW).

“Together with the existing plants including the Tanjung Bin Power Plant and TNB Pasir Gudang with 2,100MW and 275MW current capacities respectively, the entire producing capacity in the state would increase in stages to 5,375MW by year 2019,” he said.

Ongkili also said that independent power producers (IPPs) have also expressed their interest and submitted proposal for exportation of power supply to other Asean countries.

Welcoming the proposal, he said that IPPs could also be backups in any event that the country faces a shortage in power supply.

“Last year we had to import electricity supply for a total of six times from neighbouring countries namely Singapore and Thailand to meet the rising demand,” he added.

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