Sian Crampsie

Cambodia is set to start building almost 1 GW of new coal-fired power capacity after its government approved two projects.

The country’s Council of Ministers has given permission for the construction of two power plants and one transmission line worth $1.7 billion.

Han Seng Coal Mine (HSCMC) will invest in a 265 MW power plant using domestic coal supplies located in Oddar Meanchey province’s Trapaing Prasat district, while Royal Group will develop a 700 MW plant using imported coal located in Koh Kong province’s Botum Sakor district.

HSCMC also received government approval for the construction of a 230 kW power transmission line connecting Trapaing Prasat to the Siem Reap East substation.

The projects are in line with Cambodia’s master plan for the development of additional power sources between 2020 and 2030, the Council of Ministers said in a statement. They will help to ensure the security of electricity supplies, particularly in the dry season, when hydropower generation is at its lowest.

HSCMC’s coal-fired power plant project requires $294.3 million in capital investment and will be operational by early 2022, the Council said.

Royal Group’s power plant, which will be jointly developed with Beijing-headquartered Sinosteel Equipment and Engineering Co Ltd, requires $1.34 billion in capital investment and will be online in 2023 or 2024.

The transmission line requires $61.5 million of capital investment.