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Private sector help needed to reach government’s national electricity target

Chea Vannak / Khmer Times Share:
KT/Chor Sokunthea

Director General of the Department of Energy Victor Jona has warned that the government’s directive to supply electricity to 14,168 villages throughout the country by the end of 2020 is falling short.

Speaking this week, Jona said that while 94 percent of the villages now have electricity, further help will be needed from the private sector to achieve the government’s desired aim of “100 percent village electrification”.

Although Cambodia’s Electricity Supplier Authority (EDC) has already invested more than $3 billion in getting villages onto the national grid – amounting to 65 percent of the current total – Jona is calling on the private sector to help reach the final target.

“Currently, licensed private electricity distributers are providing power to more than 300 locations nationwide,” he said. “That’s an investment of around $1.5 billion.”

According to official figures from the government’s Ministry of Mines and Energy, electricity consumption across the country increased from 25.5 megawatt hours (MWh) per day in 2018 to 31MWh in 2019.

To respond to this ongoing demand, several energy projects approved in 2019 are now under construction. While this will increase investment in the sector, it is also hoped that it will help meet the government’s policy to reduce domestic tariffs.

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