S'pore starts importing electricity from Laos' hydropower via Thailand & M'sia

 Up to 100 megawatts of renewable hydropower from Laos.

Zhangxin Zheng | June 24, 2022, 03:37 AM

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Singapore has started to import electricity from Laos, making a historic milestone in Southeast Asia.

A total of four Asean countries have made this first multilateral cross-border electric trade possible.

Under this project, Singapore will be importing up to 100 megawatts (MW) of renewable hydropower from Laos, the Energy Market Authority (EMA) said.

The imported 100MW of electricity can power around 144,000 four-room HDB flats for a year.

The Lao PDR-Thailand-Malaysia-Singapore Power Integration Project (LTMS-PIP) involves sending electricity from Laos to Singapore via existing interconnections in Thailand and Malaysia.

However, the importing of electricity from Laos will not necessarily affect the electricity prices in Singapore, The Straits Times reported.

More about importing electricity from Laos

According to EMA's press release, the LTMS-PIP is a "pathfinder" aimed at realising the broader Asean Power Grid (APG) vision.

APG is a key regional initiative to enhance interconnectivity, energy security and sustainability through existing electricity interconnections.

This provides opportunities to tap on low-carbon and renewable energy sources in the region and contribute towards economic development and improving energy security and stability, EMA added.

The LTMS-PIP is one of the electricity import trials that EMA has been working on to pave the way for larger scale electricity imports of up to four gigawatts (GW) into Singapore by 2035.

Keppel Electric, a subsidiary of Keppel Infrastructure Holdings Pte Ltd, and Electricite du Laos (EdL), the state utility of Laos, have signed an initial two-year power purchase agreement.

The LTMS-PIP project will run for two years, starting from Jun. 23, 2022.

Keppel Electric is the first entity to be issued an electricity importer licence by EMA.

Moving forward, Keppel Electric and EdL will work towards establishing renewable energy tracking, verification and assurance, CNA reported.

Importing electricity from Malaysia and Indonesia

Besides the LTMS-PIP, there are two other pilot projects where Singapore carry out trials to import electricity from neighbouring countries.

These trials serve to test the technical and regulatory frameworks for importing electricity to Singapore.

This year, Singapore will also be importing 100MW electricity from Malaysia via existing interconnector between the two countries.

EMA has appointed YTL PowerSeraya Pte Ltd as the importer for this pilot, which will last for two years.

Separately, EMA will also embark on another project with a consortium led by power generation company PacificLight Power Pte Ltd.

Singapore will import 100MW equivalent of non-intermittent electricity from a solar farm in Pulau Bulan, Indonesia, under this project. The project is expected to be commissioned by around 2024.

Electricity will be supplied via a new interconnector that directly connects the solar farm to a power station in Singapore.

Top image by Mike Enerio/Unsplash