Fresh talks urged for  progress on power plan

Economy January 18, 2019 01:00

By The Nation

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ENERGY Minister Siri Jirapongphan has called for fresh discussions between energy policy planners and business representatives on the direction of the country's new Power Development Plan (PDP).



 

Energy permanent-secretary Kulit Sombatsiri said the Committee on Energy Policy Administration (CEPA) had discussed the details of a proposed extension of the PDP to 2037 at a meeting chaired by Siri on Wednesday, before forwarding the plan to the National Energy Policy Council (NEPC) for discussion at a meeting on January 24.

At the Wednesday meeting, Siri asked the Energy Policy and Planning 

 Office to discuss the issues surrounding an extended PDP with the renewable energy group of the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI).

The CEPA also considered ways to extend contracts for power purchase from 25 cogeneration small power producers (cogen SPP) with power production capacity of over 1,000 megawatts. These ideas would be forwarded to the NEPC meeting.

The draft of the new PDP contains the earlier principles that had been welcomed by all sectors. The energy minister also asked the Energy Policy and Planning Office to hold discussions with the renewable energy group for a better understanding on the issues after a letter from the FTI letter expressed concerns over the new PDP's power purchase arrangements, Kulit said.

An anonymous source from the Ministry of Energy said that at the meeting, the CEPA had not yet finalised a way to extend contracts with the cogen SPPs, although the principles had earlier been approved by NEPC. The CEPA has assigned the Energy Regulatory Commission to prepare more details for the NEPC meeting.

In regard to the much-publicised problem of airborne dust particles smaller than 2.5 microns (PM2.5), Kulit said that an announcement would be made for specifications on B20 biodiesel for service stations and the ministry will discuss with car makers their readiness for B20.

Chansin Treenuchagron, chief executive officer and president of PTT Plc, said that PTT is ready to join with the government in tackling particulates, adding that PTT Group plans to improve its refineries to the Euro 5 standard in its five-year plan (2019-2023) costing more than Bt500 billion.

In the next five years, PTT Group will focus on clean energy from bioethanol, biodiesel, solar cells, power and smart materials, he said.

A road show of the planned infrastructure at Wangchan Valley in the Eastern Economic Corridor of Innovation (EECi) for the Asean and national hub of science and technology is planned. The promotion will encourage investors to rent premises for research and development, with the road show to be held during the first and second quarters of this year.

According to PTT, the State Enterprise Policy Commission approved the appointments of PTT directors Nattachat Jarujinda and Kulit Sombatsiri, effective from January 16.

The PTT board, at a meeting yesterday, appointed Wuttikorn Stithit as vice president for natural gas wholesales marketing, replacing Noppadol Pinsupa, senior executive vice president for gas business unit, a PTT source said. The appointment will take effect from February 1.