Vientiane Times, 28 June 2013
SSPT Design and Construction Company, a private hydroelectric development company, will run a feasibility study on the construction of the Nam Theun 4 dam in Borikhamxay province.
A memorandum of understanding for the feasibility study was signed on Wednesday in Vientiane by Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment, Dr Bounthavy Sisouphanthong, and SSPT Design and Construction Company Vice President, Mr Phonethep Vilaysack.The MOU requires the company to co nduct an 18 month study to determine the viability of the project, taking into consideration the potential negative impact on social and environmental issues.
“Construction won’t begin until at least 18 months, after the feasibility study has been completely finished,” a ministry official told the *Vientiane Times*yesterday. The official said that if the study shows the project to be economically viable, the company will sign a further agreement with the government.
The planned installed capacity of the Nam Theun 4 dam will be 80 MW and the investment capital will be about US$80 million. It is expected that the total capacity of all installed generators in Laos will reach about 12,000MW by 2020.
The government plans to turn the country into a major supplier of electricity in the region and encourages private investment in hydropower so that electricity can be supplied to more remote areas in Laos.
With its abundant water resources, Laos has the potential to build more than 100 dams with total installed capacity of about 28,000MW. The government also plans that 90 percent of Lao households will have access to electricity by 2020.