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EDL, CSG Sign Agreement To Establish Transmission Line Firm

Source: Vientiane Times

Electricite du Laos (EDL) and China Southern Power Grid (CSG) on September 1 signed a shareholders agreement to jointly establish Electricite du Laos Transmission Company Limited (EDLT).

Minister of Energy and Mines. Dr Khammany Inthirath and Chinese Ambassador to Laos, Mr Jiang Zaidong attended the ceremony.

In future, EDLT plans to invest about US$2 billion in building Laos’ national backbone power grid and cross-border power grid interconnection for Laos and its neighbouring countries, to move forward projects such as the Laos-Cambodia power grid interconnection project and Laos-China power grid interconnection project, and in purchasing from EDL the right to use EDL’s existing power transmission assets at 230kV and above voltage levels.

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The official signing of the agreement marks significant and substantive progress in enhancing win-win cooperation between Laos and China in the power industry.

Founding the EDLT is an important measure for building the Community of Shared Future between Laos and China with strategic significance. It is the implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding on power cooperation signed between the energy authorities and witnessed by the State Leaders of both countries in November 2017 and is also the latest achievement of the Vientiane Declaration of the Third Mekong-Lancang Cooperation (MLC) Leaders’ Meeting.

Dr Khammany congratulated the signing of the Shareholders Agreement. He pointed out that EDLT is a key project in the industrialisation process in Laos that will be conducive to providing a self-sufficient and stable power supply to support development in Laos, as well as reinforcing the infrastructure connectivity with neighbouring countries.

He believed that with the advantages of CSG in human resources and power grid management, EDLT would bring a fresh outlook to the Lao power industry and contribute to building a community of a shared future for Laos and China.

Ambassador Jiang Zaidong addressed that the founding of EDLT takes the first step to implement the Vientiane Declaration, the important consensus reached on the Third MLC Leaders’ Meeting, which calls for strengthening the power connectivity in Mekong-Lancang countries.

He said the two companies should enhance cooperation to serve the national strategies of Laos, to improve Lao people’s livelihoods, and to achieve mutual benefit and win-win results. He also highlighted the importance to follow market principles and make its operating mechanisms market-based for the high-level development of EDLT.

According to the Shareholders Agreement, EDLT will operate under the regulation of the Lao government, taking advantage of CSG’s financial strength and mature experience on power grid construction, operations and management to move forward the construction of the national backbone power grid of Laos.

EDLT will provide a power transmission service to EDL with safety, reliability, efficiency, accessibility and sustainability. The EDLT is ambitious in driving social and economic development and improving living standards in Laos. It will also promote Laos to strengthen power grid interconnection with its neighbouring countries for transforming its water resources into economic benefits to support Laos’ efforts to build itself as the battery of clean energy in Southeast Asia.

Deputy Minister of Energy and Mines, Dr Daovong Phonekeo; Deputy Minister of Finance, Dr Bounleua Sinxayvoravong; Economic and Commercial Counselor of the Chinese Embassy to Laos, Mr Wang Qihui; Acting Managing Director of EDL, Mr Chanthaboun Soukaloun, and President of China Southern Power Grid Yunnan International Co., Ltd, Mr Zhu Danwei attended the signing ceremony.