August 03, 2014 01:00
By Patcharee Luenguthai
THE Metropolitan Electricity Authority has asked the National Council for Peace and Order to amend the Metropolitan Electricity Authority Act in order to lift constraints and diversify project investment.
MEA governor Somchai Roadrungwasinkul said that in addition to expansion of the power distribution system, the authority had the capability in terms of personnel, funding and resources to invest in various projects, but it was limited by the law.
Earlier, the MEA had proposed the draft act amendment to the ousted Yingluck Shinawatra government through the Interior Ministry, but it was not considered.
“When the National Legislative Assembly is appointed, it is expected to move forward with the draft act amendment,” Somchai said.
“This will widen opportunities for the MEA to optimise resources through diverse investment projects. The authority aims to form joint ventures with neighbouring countries to develop projects such as terminal stations.”
The MEA has also proposed that the board approve a proposal to establish a subsidiary, MEA Energy Solution, with registered capital of Bt200 million within five years. The subsidiary would provide consultancy services on energy-saving methods.
The MEA expects to get the board’s approval this year and start the operation next year.
It also urged the NCPO to put electrical conduit investment on the national agenda to gear up for the expansion of underground power transmission lines. Currently, the MEA has completed 17km of underground lines.
The project, with a total length of 49.6km in Bangkok’s Sukhumvit, Phahonyothin, Phya Thai, Pathum Wan, Chong Nonsi and Rama III districts, started in 2005.
The MEA was also assigned by the government to lay an underground transmission line along Ratchadaphisek Road from the Asoke to Rama IX intersection.
Somchai suggested that the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration should be the key player for the electrical conduit investment because of its role and responsibilities, while all the stakeholders could be allowed to participate in the investment.
He said the MEA had told the NCPO that the arrangement of communication lines over the electricity distribution lines required an integrated plan in-volving all concerned organisa-tions – the MEA, TOT, CAT Telecom, True Corp, the Mass Rapid Transit Authority of Thailand, and the Metropolitan Waterworks Authority.
The agency to be charged with steering the electrical conduit investment project was yet to be decided.
In the first half of the year, the MEA generated Bt98.5 billion in revenue with a net profit of over Bt5 billion, a slight drop on the same period last year.
However, it expects to record net profit of more than Bt8 billion, the same as last year’s figure.