Vientiane Times, 9 December 2014
The Ministry of Energy and Mines has indicated that energy generation in 2014-15 will be larger than the previous year because additional power plants nearing the end of construction will start operations.
The ministry reported recently that power generation in 2014-15 will be at least 15,659.08 million kWh.
New power generation will come from the recent completion of a small hydropower plant, the Nam Sana, which was officially inaugurated last month. The plant has an installed capacity of about 14 megawatts (MW) that will be able to generate about 49.5GWh of electricity annually.
Another power plant to complete during the year is Nam Ngiep 3A that will have an installed capacity of 44MW to generate about 152.3GWh per year, according to the report.
These two new plants will increase power generation in the country by 2.24 percent.
A further seven hydropower plants are expected to begin commercial operations in 2015 that combined will have a combined installed capacity of about 2,247MW. They are under the management of independent power producers (IPP) and Electricite du Laos (EDL).
They are the Hongsa Mine-Mouth Power Project, Nam Ngiep 2, Nam Beng, Nam Kong 2, Nam Khan 2, Houay Lamphannyai and Nam Hinboun.
The Hongsa Mine-Mouth Power Project is designed to generate about 12,582GWh annually, Nam Ngiep 2 will produce 273GWh per year, Nam Beng will generate 137GWh annually and Nam Kong 2 will produce 263GWh of electricity per year.
The ministry predicts that this fiscal year electricity exports will be 11,793.68 million kWh, worth more than 4.28 trillion kip (US$535.27 million).
The supply for local consumption is expected to be 3,185.01 million kWh and worth over 2.13 trillion kip (US$266.70 million).
Laos generates energy for both local and export markets, but must still import power for local consumption because some areas that are outside the national grid do not get sufficient electricity.
However those areas are close to the neighbouring countries of China, Vietnam and Thailand, from which power can be easily imported.
Energy imports will be around 1,128.01 million kWh at a cost greater than 500 billion kip (US$62.55 million).
In the previous fiscal year energy generation reached 15,461.44 million kWh, 6.98 percent over plan and 10.44 percent over the previous year.
The power supplied was 16,151.22 million kWh. This figure is larger than the amount generated because of energy imports.
The supply figure included 12,474.45 million kWh for export that had a value greater than 4.88 trillion kip (US$610.19 million). It was 18.08 percent larger than the previous year and also 14 percent over plan.
Local supply was 3,676.77 million kWh worth over 2.51 trillion kip (US$314.17 million) and 21.46 percent up from the year before.
Energy imports in 2013-14 were 1,293.96 million kWh at a cost of 537.76 billion kip (US$67.22 million) which was a 6.81 percent decrease from the previous year.
Power purchases from IPPs for local consumption reached about 1,816 million kWh at a cost of 663.28 billion kip (US$82.91 million).
So far Laos has 25 commissioned power plants generating energy for both local use and export with an installed capacity of 3,244.6MW. This number does not include small scale plants that have an installed capacity of less than 1 MW.