In Focus
POWER UTILITY, PROJECT | Staff Reporter, Malaysia

Why thermal projects are getting hot in Malaysia's power pipeline

78% of the 12.3GW capacity in planning or construction stages are conventional thermal plants.

The vast majority of Malaysia's ongoing and planned power-sector investments are in conventional thermal sources - perhaps unsurprising given that the country has substantial oil and natural gas reserves, according to BMI Research.

According to BMI, 78% of the 12,300MW of capacity in planning or construction stages are conventional thermal power plants; together, these projects account for more than USD8.2bn in value.

Despite the rapidly falling costs of renewables technologies and Malaysia’s growing role as a manufacturer of solar panels, we and our Power Team forecasts that the domestic electricity
market will remain dominated by thermal sources; we expect that the Malaysia's energy mix will not change significantly between 2018 and 2027.

Here's more from BMI Research:

The dominance of thermal projects is particularly pronounced in peninsular Malaysia. Major conventional thermal power projects in the country that are driving our forecasts include:

Projects 3A and 3B, consisting of two 1,000MW coal-fired power plants currently under construction. The Energy Commission of Malaysia awarded the projects to 1Malaysia Development Berhad and Mitsui in 2014. The projects are advancing at a good pace, and are expected to come online on schedule in 2017 and 2018, respectively.

Projects 4A and 4B, consisting of two gas-fired power plants, are making progress after an earlier setback in which YTL Power withdrew from the MYR3bn 4B project following concerns about preferential treatment. TNB and SIPP Energy have decided to go ahead with the Track 4A power project. 

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