ADB, Gulf SRC Sign Deal to Build 2,500 MW High-Efficiency Power Plant in Chonburi
BANGKOK, THAILAND: The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and Gulf SRC Company Limited (Gulf SRC) have signed a $227.7 million loan agreement to help finance the construction and operation of a first-of-its-kind 2,500 megawatt (MW) combined cycle power plant in Chonburi Province of Thailand.
The loan for the Chonburi Natural Gas Power Project will help provide significant, reliable, efficient, and cost-effective power generation. ADB signed the loan agreement with its cofinanciers; the Japan Bank for International Cooperation and 10 other international and local commercial banks. The power plant, which will be one of the largest in Thailand once commissioned, will utilize natural gas as a resource and be the first in the world to employ a new high-efficiency technology reducing pollutants and emissions, improving air quality and producing a lower carbon footprint.
“Increased capacity for power generation is essential for rapidly growing countries like Thailand as energy demand will continue to rise,” said ADB Deputy Director General for Private Sector Operations Mr. Christopher Thieme. “ADB’s financing of Gulf SRC will support the creation of a cleaner and more affordable source of energy generation in Thailand.”
“This project is important as it will help produce the growth and industrial transformation that is expected under the Government of Thailand’s Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) program,” said Mr. Sarath Ratanavadi, Chief Executive Officer of Gulf Energy Development Public Company Limited (GED). “We appreciate ADB’s leadership in mobilizing the finance to make the project possible.”
Thailand’s EEC program is expected to be the country’s main economic growth driver over the next decade. Expected to be fully operational by 2022, the project will be one of the first mid-merit plants—adjusting its power output depending on demand for electricity on a given day—dispatched in the corridor.
The combined-cycle gas turbine technology to be used at the plant for the first time anywhere in the world has maximum rated thermal efficiency greater than 63%.
Apart from contributing reliable, clean, and cost-effective energy to the country’s electricity grid, the project will help Thailand avoid 737,000 tons of carbon dioxide and provide employment to the local population, including women.
Gulf SRC, established in 2012 to develop, construct, own, and operate the power plant, is fully owned by Independent Power Development, a joint venture between GED and Mitsui & Co. Ltd (Mitsui). GED is one of the largest power generation companies in Thailand and Mitsui is one the largest trading companies in Japan.
ADB is committed to achieving a prosperous, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable Asia and the Pacific, while sustaining its efforts to eradicate extreme poverty. Established in 1966, it is owned by 67 members—48 from the region. In 2017, ADB operations totaled $32.2 billion, including $11.9 billion in cofinancing.