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Burma’s electrical supply back to ‘normal’

The authorities claim electricity has returned to normal in most parts of the country except in some areas of Rangoon and Mandalay, according to an article by Biweekly Eleven News on Thursday.

The electrical grid in Burma is plagued by weak infrastructure. Photo: MizzimaPower cuts caused candlelight demonstrations across the country starting in mid-May.

The renewed power supply was attributed to the completion of repairs on four towers in the Shweli-Mansan national power grid, which were taken out of commission by a mine blast attributed to the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) in Namkham Township in northern Shan state on May 19, said Biweekly Eleven News.

The resumption of a normal power supply is still below the needs of industry and regular citizens. Power supply problems include a lack of sufficient power plants, a weak national grid distribution system and overall poor power infrastructure. Many businesses and citizens rely on power generators to offset the shortages.

Rangoon industrial zones are still barred from using electricity for a fixed period of six hours at night to enable power to be shifted to public use when such use is at a peak between 5 to 11 p.m, said the newspaper.

Responding to the country’s lack of sufficient electricity, especially in the summer season, the government has announced that J Power Co of Japan will build a 600-megawatt (mw) coal-fired power plant near Rangoon along with another 500-mw gas-fired power plant to be built in collaboration with BKB Co of South Korea, according to the Ministry of Electric Power.

The ministry said it would also cooperate with General Electric Co. and Caterpillar Co. of the United States in building additional power plants.

According to the ministry, due to an increase in the number of electric power users and state-owned and private factories and workshops, the power demand has hit 1,890 mw against an actual  supply of 1, 500 mw.

Burma has 20 hydropower plants, one coal-fired plant and 10 gas-fired power plants that generate a maximum of about 1, 610 mw in the monsoon season and 1,340 mw in summer, when the water level in reservoirs is lower.
Last Updated ( Friday, 08 June 2012 13:31 )  

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