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SouthEast Asia ramps on ASEAN power grid

Singapore's Energy Market Authority (EMA) said on 16 March that it granted conditional approval for the local conglomerate Keppel Energy to import 1 gigawatt (GW) of electricity from Cambodia to the country. The approval, the first to be awarded by EMA for large-scale electricity imports, marks a significant milestone in Singapore's ambition to import up to 4 GW of low-carbon electricity by 2035. The import is expected to start after 2030.

The electricity from solar energy, hydropower, and potentially also wind power, supported by battery storage systems or pumped storage hydropower, will be transmitted from Cambodia to Singapore via new subsea cables of more than 1,000 km in length. Singapore and Cambodia had signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on energy cooperation in October 2022.

The MOU and the conditional approval are important steps towards the vision of an ASEAN power grid after the implementation of the Laos-Thailand-Malaysia-Singapore Power Integration Project (LTMS-PIP) last year. Singapore's tapping on an ASEAN power grid was advocated five years ago by 350 Singapore in its recommendations to Singapore's National Climate Change Secretariat (NCCS).

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