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Lancang-Mekong media personnel visit the China Southern Power Grid Company Limited in Guangzhou.

China’s CSG balances energy supply with Lancang-Mekong countries, eyes more opportunities

China Southern Power Grid (CSG) is eyeing more opportunities in the Lancang-Mekong countries, especially Laos, after having already been active in power investment and trade within the region.
The Chinese state-owned company and other Mekong countries have helped each other to balance power supply, thus complementing one another, General Manager of CSG’s International Cooperation Department, Li Xinhao, said recently.
The company exports power to neighbouring countries in the dry season to fulfill their needs, but imports electricity in the rainy season when these countries’ generating capacity rises, driven by the high volume of water that accumulates in reservoirs.
Mr Li said there is yet more room to cooperate and balance power supply among these countries.
“In the future, we will build more transmission lines in Laos,” he told media personnel from Lancang-Mekong countries during their visit to the company in the Chinese city of Guangzhou.
“And we will also help Laos to build transmission lines to neighbouring nations so that in the future there will be more interconnections among the Lancang-Mekong countries.”
China Southern Power Grid foresees these opportunities as Laos has the potential to generate hydroelectricity for sale to neighbouring countries, thanks to its abundant rivers.
The Lao government is also promoting investment in other forms of green energy, such as wind farms, to diversify renewable energy sources. Some foreign firms are building large wind farms in Laos with the intention of exporting the power generated.
China Southern Power Grid has strengthened its interconnections with neighbouring national power grids and continues to deepen international power exchanges and cooperation.
By the end of 2022, the company had transmitted 40,212GWh of electricity to Vietnam, 1,228GWh to Laos and 4,969GWh to Myanmar, and purchased 23,279GWh from Myanmar.
Mr Li said the volume of two-way power trade between Laos and China is not substantial at present because only 115kV interconnecting transmission lines have been installed, but this trade is set to increase.
“We are launching a 500kV project so that in the future there will be more power trade between China and Laos,” he said, adding that China enjoys a trade surplus because Laos needs more power in the dry season.
Guaranteeing electrical power supply for Guangdong, Guangxi, Yunnan, Guizhou, Hainan, Hong Kong and Macao, the company connects power grids in Hong Kong, Macao and Southeast Asian countries.
The manager said CSG is focusing on the development of power grids and distribution rather than building hydropower plants, saying there are other Chinese players in this field.
China Energy Engineering Corporation (CEEC), a Chinese multinational corporation providing solutions and services for global energy and power, infrastructure and green low-carbon development, has actively participated in energy development in the Lancang-Mekong countries including Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam.
These countries are key markets for CEEC’s overseas business, its executives told Lancang-Mekong media personnel during their visit to the company in Beijing.
To date, China Energy Engineering Corporation has built 107 hydropower plants, thermal power plants, power transmission and water projects worth over US$9 billion in the Lancang-Mekong region.
“We will also help them to build transmission lines to utilise the power generated,” Mr Li told the media group.
Media personnel attended the 2023 Lancang-Mekong Cooperation Media Summit in Beijing on June 27. They also visited local enterprises, industrial parks and communities in Beijing, Guangdong and Yunnan to observe cooperation progress under the Lancang-Mekong Cooperation and Belt and Road Initiative.

By Souksakhone Vaenkeo
 (Latest Update July 11, 2023)


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