Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Energy efficiency policy due end-2022

Energy efficiency policy due end-2022

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Four EdC technicians work on power lines in Phnom Penh in June 2020. Heng Chivoan

Energy efficiency policy due end-2022

Cambodia plans to roll out a new national policy on energy efficiency by the end of 2022 in a bid to slow the growth rate of national energy demand from 2014-2035 by at least 20 per cent by the end of the period.

Initiated in 2021 with the support of the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the national policy introduces similar sector-specific targets, such as 25 per cent for industry as well as the building sub-sector, and 15 per cent for the transportation sector.

Although more concrete figures for the new document are not publicly available, the 2013 edition of the policy had set a similar goal, indicating an assumed total energy demand of 5.95 millions of tonnes of oil equivalent (Mtoe) in 2035, meaning that the target would be to bring that figure down to 4.76 Mtoe. However Enerdata statistics suggest that energy demand topped 8 Mtoe in 2020.

Ministry of Mines and Energy director-general for energy Heng Kunleang told The Post that his ministry had finished a draft of the national policy and forwarded it to the Economic and Financial Policy Committee for review before it is submitted to the government for approval.

Previous studies, conducted under Kunleang’s watch, on facilities and sites operated by businesses involved in industry, commerce, transportation and building construction have found material inefficiencies in energy usage, he said, adding that “we are focusing on installing energy-efficient equipment”.

He said his ministry will keep calling on the people, especially those in these and related fields, to use devices and equipment from neighbouring countries that are certified to be energy efficient and lower energy intensity.

Cambodia Rice Federation Lun Yeng propounded that the current quantity of electricity allocated to the rice sector is not enough, especially for the paddy driers installed in some mills, leading to energy shortages he said jeopardise the quality of the grain as well as the equipment.

He said that “most” of the equipment and systems used in the mills are of high quality, and imported from Switzerland.

Moreover, although the private sector has looked to the sun to power production, Yeng stressed that operating solar power systems is too expensive. Regardless, “we expect that energy consumption will be more efficient”, he enthused.

The state-run utility Electricite du Cambodge (EdC) levies a monthly “capacity charge” based on the demand contracted with customers that connect at higher voltage levels, although this only applies to solar systems at present, according to Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH (GIZ).

Kaing Monika, deputy secretary-general for Garment Manufacturers Association in Cambodia, underscored that relatively high electricity tariffs, compared to regional peers, undermine the competitiveness of industry, especially the garment sector.

He commented, however, that the availability of energy is “one of the most important determinants of economic development”, and at present, “sufficient”.

MOST VIEWED

  • Historic Battambang town bans billboards

    The Battambang town administration informed all house and business owners in Svay Por commune to remove all billboards by August 1 as it is preparing to submit the town to UNESCO for inclusion on its historical cultural heritage list. Its July 25 notice said all signage was

  • All foreigners' accommodations to be inspected: Sar Kheng

    The Ministry of Interior is undertaking a serious effort to inspect all the accommodations of foreigners in Cambodia – except diplomats – in order to find and identify human traffickers. Minister Sar Kheng said this would include inspections on the homes of foreigners employed by businesses, private

  • Ice cream, noodles flagged over carcinogen

    The General Department of Customs and Excise of Cambodia (GDCE) has identified three types of instant noodles and ice cream trademarks originating from Thailand, Vietnam and France that are suspected to contain ethylene oxide, which poses a cancer risk to consumers. The general department has

  • Exclusive interview with Josep Borrell Fontelles, High Representative of the EU

    CAMBODIA is hosting the 55th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM) and Related Meetings this week with top officials from the US, China, and Russia and other countries in the region slated to attend and to meet with face-to-face with their counterparts on the sidelines. In

  • Khmer influence growing in Hollywood

    The rare success of The Cleaning Lady – an American TV series which stars Cambodian-French Hollywood actress Elodie Yung – sheds some light on Asian immigrants to the US, yet a significant representation gap of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) exists both on screen and behind

  • Rise in Thai air routes to Siem Reap fuels travel hopes

    Local tourism industry players are eager for regional airline Bangkok Airways Pcl’s resumption of direct flight services between the Thai capital and Siem Reap town on August 1 – home of Cambodia’s awe-inspiring Angkor Archaeological Park – which is expected to boost the growth rate of