By Maung Lwan Ni (Yesagyo)
Yellow like gold and fragrance like flower
Two power plants,
Like the country full of gold,
Power to come in large amount
Thanks to further newly-built power plant projects
Myanmar people to be highly pleased
As said by the original situation
Although the gas is thought to run out
Ahlon installed with the new turbine
It will change into a new age
Similarly, Kyunchaung installed with the new turbine
If Ahlon and Kyunchaung are merged into
A total of 10,000 universes to be full of light
Gold is a very precious metal and everyone loves gold and everyone wants it. If the entire people of Myanmar have something they value like gold, it might be electric power for certain.
The government is striving for all-round development in all aspects in order to raise standard of living and promote socio-economic life of the people. In an attempt to achieve success in multiple areas, transport, communication and electric power play a crucial role. Decisive policies are being laid down for the rapid equitable development in all these areas.
Always estimating that annually increasing power demand would be fulfilled, the Ministry of Electricity and Energy is in the process of implementing the projects designing long-term and short-term plans. Power generation, power transportation and power distribution are being carried out for equitable development across the country regardless of discrimination of regions and states for ensuring that all our national brethren should enjoy the fruitful results.
With such noble goodwill and strenuous efforts, the power consumption of the whole country accounted for 34 % before 2016, but was up to 50.09 % in 2019 December and it is a proof of noticeable progress. The ultimate goal of the government is that every part of the country will have access to power in 2030.
At a time when the good foundations of socio-economic life are becoming stronger, power demand is also increasing year after year. The Ministry of Electricity and Energy is tackling increased power demand with the use of all different means in a synchronous manner as much as possible. Under the guidance of the government, with the purpose of fulfilling the need of increased power demand speedily during this summer, many power plants including the projects of liquefied natural gas to power are being built in Ahlon, Thanlyin and Thakayta in Yangon Region, Magway and Kyunchaung in Magway Region, Shwetaung in Bago Region, and Kyaukphyu in Rakhine State. It’s unbelievable that all seven power plants are under implementation to generate 1,166 megawatt within a short time.
What you said is easy but what you do is difficult in the fulfillment of the need for power sector. Imagination is impossible. Based on the prevailing economic situation of the country, mineral resources and human resources, the country has to struggle with the difficult situation. Criticism and challenges have to be bravely overcome. As the fruitful results on account of vigorous efforts, a 66MW power plant built in Magway town, Magway Region joined the national grid on 13 December in 2019 and is now serving the public duty.
Out of remaining six power plants, a 151.54MW facility established in the compound of Ahlon power plant in Ahlon Township, Yangon Region and a 20.54MW facility in the compound of Kyunchaung power plant in Pakokku District, Magway Region have begun power generation.
In Ahlon, there is a department-owned gas-fired power plant. The performance of the gas-fired plant is slowing noticeably down as it has been used for long. Even if the gas-fired power plant consumes 36 million cubic feet of gas a day, it can generate only 70MW. As a result of that the old turbines were substituted with new high-capacity ones. The new power plant built on a plot of land having 5.9 acres in the compound of Ahlon power plant will consume the current amount of natural gas used for the old turbine. The installation of the new turbines can generate an output of 151.54MW up more than 80MW compared to the previous power generation, and this surplus amount is as valuable as gold.
Tenders were invited for new Ahlon power plant project on a basis of international competitive bidding (ICB) on 28 June in 2019. The Consortium of China Energy Engineering Group Hunan Electric Power Design Institute Co., Ltd. China its (Holding) Co., Ltd and Shenzhen Shennan Power Gas Tarbine Engineering Technique Co., Ltd won the tender and began work on 2 September in 2019. This project has two steps—one is natural gas turbine and another is steam turbine. The first-step gas turbine manages to generate an output of 100MW and the second-step steam turbine capable of generating an output of 51.54MW is nearing completion.
The gas turbine installed at Ahlon power plant was made from GE Company of the United States and it is a modern turbine of Frame 9E and it is also a short-term plan of five years. As a long-term plan, a new State-owned power plant will be built. The already-built natural gas pipelines and power lines will remain ready for the project to be intended for long-term plan. The power output generated from Ahlon power plant will be distributed to Yangon through 230KV Ahlon main power station and the surplus power will be sent to the national grid and it is very beneficial for the State.
The Yangonites have begun enjoying the fruitful results of new Ahlon power plant project that could be implemented within 270 days. This project has to overcome different forms of difficulty. Especially it coincides with the outbreak of globally-terrifying COVID-19. The project has met the challenge of the timely arrival of the machines, engineers and skilled workers though the country is in crisis of COVID-19.
In spite of having the challenges amid COVID-19, the department managed to implement the project in coordination with local authorities and ministries concerned observing the guidance given by the State at a time when anti-COVID-19 measures are being carried out by forming the national level committee for prevention, treatment and control of the COVID-19. Similarly, a 20.54MW facility built in the compound of Kyunchaung power plant in Pakokku District, Magway Region is now generating power. Tenders were invited for Kyunchaung power plant similar to Ahlon on a basis of international competitive bidding (ICB) on 28 June in 2019. The Consortium of V Power Group Holdings Ltd and V Power Holdings Ltd won the tender and began construction tasks on 6 September in 2019 with the use of 11 Germany-made MTU 2.026MW gas engines. This power plant project is using 5 million cubic feet of inland gas a day, and this amount of gas is taken from the previous department-owned power plant which could generate only an output of 5MW. Kyunchaung power plant installed with new machines can now generate an output of 20.54MW, up 15MW compared to the power generation from the previous department-owned power plant. Such more generation of power is due to the utilization of the new technologies. The period of Kyunchaung power plant project is five years from the date the operation started. The output of power will be sent to the national grid connecting with 66 kV bus in the compound of Kyunchaung power plant. As said above, efforts have been made for ensuring sufficient power generation in the summer of 2020. Out of seven shortly-built power plants capable of generating 1166MW, three can output 186MW fulfilling the power requirement of the people linking with the national grid. Strenuous efforts are being made for ensuring that the remaining power projects will be able to generate the power rapidly.
Now restrictions on travel have been still placed in the country as part of preventive measures against the possible spread of COVID-19 infection. Health guidelines have been released from the Ministry of Health and Sports and instructions have been given to the people to follow stay-at-home-plan as well. During the COVID-19 outbreak, the government reduced the number of civil servants to half to operate the functions. At that time, some factories, industries and services came to a stop, but the power consumption of the whole country is going on without breaking down. The power demand of the people is not going to stop, too. Anyhow, the employees of the Ministry of Electricity and Energy are engaged in generating, sending and distributing power despite the possible risk of COVID-19 infection.
The Ministry of Electricity and Energy is constantly fulfilling the power requirement of the people while the people are enjoying the fruits of development of the power plant projects undertaken across the country. As mentioned above it is an undeniable fact that both Ahlon and Kyunchaung power plants are like gold, a precious metal everyone loves and wants. Translated by Htut Htut (Twantay)