GEIDCO Chairman Liu Zhenya Visits the Laos, Myanmar and Bangladesh Promoting Gird Interconnection
From July 2nd to 10th, Liu Zhenya, Chairman of GEIDCO and President of CEC, visited the Laos, Myanmar and Bangladesh and met with Boungnang Vorachith, General Secretary of the Lao PRP and Laotian President, Dr. Khammany Inthirath, the Laotian Minister of Energy and Mines, U Tuntun Naing, Permanent Secretary of the Myanmar Ministry of Planning and Finance, U Htein Lwin, Permanent Secretary of the Myanmar Ministry of Electricity and Energy, Thant Myint, Advisor to the President of Myanmar, Mr. Nasrul Hamid, State Minister of the Bangladesh Ministry of Power, Energy & Mineral Resources, and Masum-Al-Beruni, Managing Director of the Power Grid Company of Bangladesh. These meetings allowed for the exchange of ideas concerning power and energy development in Laos, Myanmar and Bangladesh and grid connectivity, and important agreements were reached.

On September 26, 2015, Chinese President Xi Jinping proposed the construction of Global Energy Interconnection (GEI) at the UN Sustainable Development Summit. On May 14th of this year, President Xi Jinping, at the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation, stressed that we need to seize the opportunities presented by the new round of change in energy structures and the revolution in energy technologies to develop global energy interconnection and achieve green and low-carbon development.

Liu Zhenya shared ideas about the Chinese initiative for GEI development and the Belt and Road Initiative with the relevant parties and discussed GEI, EITI, the work of GEIDCO and China¡¯s achievements in UHV power transmission, smart grids and clean energy development. He also carried out in-depth exchanges on accelerating grid interconnection in the Indochina Peninsula, promoting clean energy development and use and achieving sustainable development. He pointed out that GEI conforms to the principles of the Belt and Road Initiative, which is committed to solving problems related to sustainable human development. Global clean energy reserves are very abundant. With technological progress, clean energy development will be more efficient and economical. It is predicted that clean energy will become more competitive than fossil fuels before 2025. UHV technologies transmit electricity in large capacity over long distances with little loss, making cross-border and intercontinental power transmission and GEI possible. The essence of GEI is a global power grid. It is a global energy and resource allocation platform based on a large-scale interconnected grid. This platform will be able to coordinate between areas with different time zones, seasons and power tariffs, strongly promoting global power trades with huge overall benefits.

Liu Zhenya pointed out that the Indochina Peninsula and neighboring regions have a large population, small fossil fuel reserves, abundant hydropower resources, but small per capita power consumption, indicating huge development potential. There is a need to build an integrated synchronous grid that connects these regions with China to the north and South Asia to the west, thus optimizing power resource allocation on a larger scale. Laos, Myanmar and Bangladesh have abundant hydropower resources. Therefore, by accelerating hydropower development and building cross-border and trans-regional power grids, they can effectively solve the problem of seasonal hydropower abundance or shortage, create huge economic value and drive sustainable socio-economic development in the region.

All parties approved of and actively responded to the GEI proposal. Bounnhang Vorachith recognized and supported the Belt and Road Initiative and GEI, saying that, as a comprehensive strategic partner of China, Laos is always willing to deepen cooperation with China in the energy sector, with the aim of turning Laos into the ¡°power storage¡± of ASEAN. Currently, Laos is witnessing rapid development in the construction of hydropower stations, but has a rather weak power grid. Therefore, the Laotian government is accelerating research to promote the implementation of related projects. Dr. Khammany Inthirath approved of the GEI concept and thinks that promoting grid interconnection with neighboring countries, especially with China, can fundamentally solve the problem of excessive hydropower in the wet season and hydropower shortages in the dry season. He expressed his wish to enhance cooperation, carry out joint research and promote Sino-Laotian grid interconnection. U Tuntun Naing expressed a willingness to jointly promote Sino-Myanmar power interconnection, with the hope of quickly formulating detailed plans to accelerate research planning and project implementation. U Htein Lwin expressed his appreciation and approval of the strategic proposal of GEI and said that Myanmar is actively promoting grid interconnection with neighboring countries and urgently needs to accelerate grid interconnection with China to relieve the pressure on his nation¡¯s power supply. Thant Myint stated that the government will promote GEI across Myanmar to gain more support. Mr. Nasrul Hamid expressed his appreciation of the progress China has made in GEI and UHV power transmission. He hopes that the two countries will strengthen practical cooperation to promote GEI. Masum-Al-Beruni expressed his firm support for Sino-Bangladeshi grid interconnection and his willingness to sign cooperation agreements with GEIDCO, to carry out joint research and push forward the related work.

Since it was founded over a year ago, GEIDCO has made extensive efforts to encourage strategic research, promote the GEI concept, enhance international cooperation, accelerate technological innovation and promote project implementation. These efforts have yielded significant progress. GEIDCO has signed memorandum of understanding with UNDESA, UNESCAP, the AU, the League of Arab States and GCCIA and has established partnerships with more than 130 international organizations, government departments, businesses, institutions and universities in 41 countries and regions, forming a widespread consensus around its ventures. Now, GEI has entered the stage of strategic implementation.

Source: GEI Office of SGCC

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