Cambodia is Building Transmission Lines
Funded by ADB

Picture: Battambang, Cambodia's important agricultural center

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) said it would provide a 7 million US$ loan without government guarantee to Cambodia for building transmission lines to import electricity from Thailand.  This development will include Cambodia's tourism hub of Siem Reap - home to the famed Angkor Wat temple, and Battambang and Banteay Meanchey - an important agricultural center, where there have been power shortages.  The bank also pointed out that the move would be a boost for the economy of northwest Cambodia, not just in tourism but also in agriculture, services and manufacturing.  In addition to connecting the major towns, the new lines will also provide opportunities to wire rural communities along the route.

This will give the region access to a constant supply of inexpensive and reliable electricity, which is essential for economic growth," said Jo Yamagata, a Director with ADB's Private Sector Operations Department.

This first ADB private sector infrastructure project in Cambodia's financial assistance is being made to the (Cambodia) Power Transmission Lines Co Ltd (CPTL), a private Cambodian company.  The 115-kilovolt power lines will connect with Thailand's national grid at the border and will then run about 221 kilometre into Cambodia.

Current Situation:

Electricity in Cambodia is among the most expensive in the region because of the disaggregated and isolated small-scale systems.

Northwest Cambodia, like the rest of the country, suffers from insufficient and unreliable power. There is no national grid and electricity is generated almost exclusively by small diesel plants that generate relatively high emissions. This hinders Cambodia's ability to attract investment and promote sustainable economic activities, which are critical to reducing poverty.

In Siem Reap, a tourism hub, many hotels rely on their own power generators.

There are similar power shortages in neighboring Battambang, an important agricultural center, and Banteay Meanchey, which supports manufacturing and trading activities.

The bank's assistance will go toward the estimated $34 mlllion total project cost and the balance of the funding is being provided through equity and loans from the Export-Import Bank of Thailand, Foreign Trade Bank of Cambodia, and a wholly owned subsidiary of Gramercy Advisors/Arco Capital Management Family of Funds.

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