MALAYSIA’S SARAWAK Energy Bhd (SEB) is in talks with Brunei and Sabah authorities on proposed power exchange agreements.
Chairman Amar Abdul Hamed Sepawi said the agreements would provide a platform for SEB to develop the proposed Borneo power grid that would pave the way for Sarawak to export electricity to neighbouring Brunei and Sabah.
He said SEB, which is now undertaking the fourth hydroelectric dam project in Baleh in central Sarawak, had taken the first step towards establishing a Trans-Borneo power grid with its first interconnection to west Kalimantan, Indonesia, last year.
Under an agreement with Perusahan Listrik Negara Persero (which is an Indonesian utility body), SEB commenced the export of 50MW initially to west Kalimantan last year and this would be gradually increased to 230MW.
StarBiz had reported earlier that the final report for the feasibility study on the Sarawak-Brunei Power Interconnection System was completed about seven years ago.
The study was carried out under a memorandum of understanding signed between SEB, Brunei’s Prime Minister’s Office and Brunei Department of Electrical Services to collaborate on the generation, connection and distribution of power as well as management of electricity supply between the Brunei and Sarawak governments.
Brunei was said to have agreed to purchase 100MW of electricity from SEB, with an option to buy another 50MW.
It was also reported that the proposed first phase of power export to Brunei would be from Tudan via the border point in Sg Tujuh, Miri, while the second phase might be via Limbang after a proposed hydro dam in Trusan is built.
More recently, there were high-level discussions between Sarawak and Brunei leaders concerning the potential for Brunei to contribute equity to the development of hydroelectric dams in Sarawak.
At SEB’s Hari Raya gathering last Friday, Chief Minister Datuk Amar Johari Tun Openg said Sarawak would go ahead in building the proposed Trusan dam in Lawas, Limbang. The proposed dam is expected to generate up to 200MW and will be the first to be developed in the northern region.
Johari was reported to have discussed with the Brunei Sultan on the proposed dam project during a recent visit to the sultanate.
According to Abdul Hamed, the feasibility studies on the Trusan dam project were completed about four years ago.