UTILITILY IN THAILAND

 

 

ELECTRICITY

Electricity system of Thailand is 220 V and 50 Hz.

The Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT), has been primarily responsible for power generation and transmission, whereas the Metropolitan Electricity Authority (MEA) and the Provincial Electricity Authority (PEA) share the responsibility of distributing electricity to Bangkok and the provinces, respectively. EGAT reports to the Office of the Prime Minister, whereas MEA and PEA report to the Ministry of Interior.

EGAT's long-term plan is to increase the minimum power reserve from 15% to 25% to raise energy supply security. EGAT's plans of increasing net installed capacity by 30,929 MW will bring Thailand's total capacity to 43,918 MW by 2011.

  

Independent Power Producer Program

In 1995, the independent power producer (IPP) program was launched in an effort to partly privatize state-controlled power utilities. Foreign and local companies have shown great interest in building, owning and operating large power plants that will ease the state's burden of investing in power generation. 

The IPP projects will be wholly private undertakings. Some of the key IPP terms set by the Government are :

  • any power prices submitted by IPPs should not exceed EGAT's avoided cost

  • the contract for the power purchase agreement must be between 20 and 25 years

  • the capacity of each project for commissioning in 1996-2002 must not exceed 1,400 MW, but may be expanded during the years 2003-2006

  • investors must have proven technological capability matching the required performance specifications

  • fuel choices must be clear, acceptable to the public, have stable pricing structure, have secured supply and support the Government's policy on fuel diversification for the country.

Priorities for project sites will be given to the following areas in the following order; central region, west coast (e.g. Prachuab Khiri Khan), east coast (e.g. Rayong), other regions and neighboring countries.

   

WATER

The Thai government is working seriously at maintaining Thailand's water at international standards.

Thailandís annual average rainfall is 800,000 cubic metres, but can only retain 70,000. Only 40,000 cubic metres of rain can actually be used.

A planned survey of water resources is aimed at finding the best ways to manage the countryís water resources for agricultural use and generating power.

The solution to Thailandís drought problems may include securing irrigation water from neighbouring countries. The government plans to seriously explore the possibility of sharing water resources with Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos.

The combination of industrial growth, population growth and rising incomes has led to an increased demand for water. Demand is estimated to be growing 20 percent a year, but the investment program of the Provincial Waterworks Authority (PWA) has increased supplies about 12 percent a year. The PWA has the capacity to serve about 60 percent of the 10 million people living in the 220 cities and towns under its jurisdiction with about 1.2 million cubic meters a day.

Industrial estates take either ground water or surface water and treat it to supply factories in their estates. Some estates take raw water from local authorities, treat it themselves and then supply their clients. Factories that use deep wells as their water source, especially those in the greater Bangkok area, are being pressured to stop and buy water instead from regulated water suppliers.

As for Thailand, demand for water is about 53 billion cubic meters annually. Out of the volume, almost 90 percent is allocated for agriculture, 6 percent for consumption, and the rest for industrial use. Demand for water in the country is estimated at 70 billion cubic meters annually in the next 10 years. Thailand consists of 25 river basins, with an annual rainfall between 1,200 and 2,700 millimeters. The amount of average annual runoff is 200 billion cubic meters, but only 38 million cubic meters, or 19 percent, can be stored in reservoirs.

  

TELECOMMUNICATION

Thailand's telecommunications services are at an international standard, especially in urban areas such as Bangkok. There is an abundance of fixed lines for offices and residences. The Bangkok metro area is served by two fixed-line operators: the Telephone Organization of Thailand (TOT), a state enterprise, and Telecom Asia, a private company. Both can install phones in a timely fashion; usually a matter of days. Local calls are not timed and carry a fixed charge of 3 baht per call. Areas outside Bangkok are served by the TOT and the private company TT&T Public Co., Ltd. The fixed line network has a total capacity of over 8 million lines, of which about 7 million are in use. In addition, public telephones are available nationwide.

International calls are handled by the Communications Authority of Thailand (CAT), which provides direct access to just about any country. International rates have been falling and as of January 2004 there were substantial decreases in calls to the U.K., U.S.A., Australia and many other countries.

Mobile phones are easily available at competitive prices from three main service providers using GSM digital networks: Advanced Info Services (AIS), Total Access Communications (TAC) and TA Orange. A wide range of service packages are available with many prices and options from which to choose. The number of mobile subscribers has soared from a less than 2 million in 1997 to about 15 million in January 2004.

Relative to the internet, about a dozen private companies offer services for personal and corporate accounts. Prepaid or subscription services are available at reasonable rates. Monthly rates from some companies are as low as 700 baht per month for unlimited service. The government has committed itself to making broadband internet available and affordable. Broadband connections are widely available through the country.

TOT plans to expand the existing core network by using IP technology in order to unite technology and services; voice, data and multimedia services on a single network based on NGN platform. This is to enhance the efficiency and flexibility of network anagement to be convenient in maintenance through a control center and can adequately accommodate a wide array of new and advanced services. This expansion will be able to support 60 Gbps for up to 1,603,440 broadband IP ports nationwide in 2008.

 

 

Please read our disclaimer before using.  © Copyright www.ThaiLaws.com.  All rights reserved. 

Any comments mail to:   thailaws@lawyer.com