Wednesday, October 23, 2013

China-backed power plant starts distribution in Kachin State

China-backed power plant starts distribution in Kachin State

22 October 2013, Eleven Media Group (Myanmar)

The Chibwenge hydropower plant has started distributing power to
Myitkyina and Waingmaw towns in Kachin State from Monday, according to
state officials.

Financed by China Power Investment Corporation (CPI), the Chibwenge
hydropower plant can generate up to 99.9 megawatts of electricity from
its three generators, of which only one is currently operative as
technicians check the power lines.

'We are trying to distribute the power. We have been inspecting the
power lines since yesterday.The power will be distributed as soon as the
lines are working,' state electricity manager Than Tin told Eleven Media
on Monday.

A 132 kilovolt power line from Chibway to both Wahshaung and Waingmaw
has been connected from the existing Chibway-Myitsone line. A 132/66
kilovolt sub-power station and a 66/11 kilovolt sub-power station have
also been built in Waingmaw and Myitkyina respectively.

'Excess power will be transferred to the national power grid. A
Union-level contract has not been signed yet. The MOU [memorandum of
understanding] will be signed with the Ministry of Electric Power in Nay
Pyi Taw either this month or next month. We are doing this after making
basic agreement. I don�t know the price per unit. All three generators
will be operated,' said Sai Maung Shwe, state minister for electrical power.

The power generated from Chibwenge will be distributed by the Buugar
Company owned by the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) in Myitkyina and
Waingmaw. The power line will be connected to the national power grid in

La Aung, distribution manager of Buugar Company, said: 'We don�t know
the price for buying power and distributing it. The state government has
instructed us to distribute the power. They informed us the power will
be generated before the 25th. It will be sent to Yankyiaung sub-power
station. More staff will be needed when a new power line has been
expanded. I�m happy that we get the required power.'

The Chibwenge dam is part of the seven dams built by CPI as part of the
Myitsone dam project. Although the Myitsone dam projected has been
suspended following public outcry over environmental and social impact
of the project, six smaller dams -- including the Chibwenge dam -- along
the Maykha and the Malikha rivers have been built.

The power plant suffered some damages in 2012 when its machines and
power lines were destroyed during the clashes between the government and
the KIA.

Power has been supplied to Myitkyina and Waingmaw through Malikha
hydropower plant owned by KIA. Both cities need 15 megawatts of
electricity to meet demand but the power plant can only generate 10
megawatts and the remaining 5 megawatts will be supplied alternatively.
The Putato district and Tanai, Sumprabum, and Injangyang townships in
the Kachin State still do not have any electricity.

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