Forum on Energy Interconnection in Asia Pacific Convened in Ho Chi Minh City – GEIDCO Releases Research Findings on Asia-Pacific Power Interconnection

On March 3, local time, Global Energy Interconnection Development and Cooperation Organization (GEIDCO) hosted the Forum on Energy Interconnection in Asia Pacific at Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology (HCMUT) in Vietnam, together with the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and IEEE Region 10 (R10).  GEIDCO released a research report titled Opportunities and Outlook on Power Interconnection in the Asia-Pacific Region at the Forum. The report provides reference for deepening cooperation in energy and electricity and accelerating the development of Asia-Pacific Energy Interconnection.

Mr. Liu Zehong, Executive Vice Chairman of GEIDCO, and Ms. Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana, Executive Secretary of UNESCAP, delivered speeches via video link. Professor Saifur Rahman, IEEE President, Professor Lance C.C. Fung, IEEE R10 Director, Professor Deepak Mathur, former IEEE R10 Director, Mr. Nguyen Tai Anh, Vice President of Vietnam Electricity (EVN), and Nguyen Danh Thao, Vice President of Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology (HCMUT) attended and addressed the Forum.

According to Mr. Liu Zehong, with a large population and strong demand on energy, the Asia-Pacific accounts for more than half of the global carbon emissions. To achieve sustainable development in the Asia-Pacific, we need to focus on energy as the linchpin to strengthen regional energy cooperation, and accelerate the transition towards green and low-carbon energy. The fundamental solution is to build a clean energy-dominant, electricity-centric, and interconnected Asia-Pacific Energy Interconnection. First, we need to promote clean energy production. Priority should be given to the construction of hydro, wind and solar energy bases in Southeast Asia, South Asia, Mongolia, northern and western China, and northern Australia, and development of distributed clean energy in light of local conditions. Second, we need to accelerate electrification in energy consumption. Priority should be given to the replacement of coal, oil and gas with electricity in industry, transportation, commerce and residential use, to raise the level of electrification across the whole society. Third, we must enable the wide-area allocation of energy. Priority should be given to the enhancement and interconnection of power grids among countries, to build regional and sub-regional “electricity highways” to deliver clean electricity to load centers in East Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia and Oceania, so as to achieve large-scale optimal allocation and efficient use of clean energy.

Liu stressed that in recent years, China has made pioneering efforts in clean energy generation, UHV and flexible DC power transmission, and secure operation of large power grids. China’s installed capacity of renewable energy has come to 1.2 TW, and 36 UHV power transmission projects have been put into operation, including 17 AC projects and 19 DC projects. In addition, China is home to the world’s largest UHV AC and DC hybrid grid. China has enhanced its energy cooperation with neighboring countries. With 28 cross-border power transmission lines connecting China with Vietnam, Mongolia, Myanmar and other countries, the level of interconnection is on steady rise. China’s innovative practices in UHV power transmission and clean energy have tested related technologies for the Asia-Pacific Energy Interconnection, and provided experience and reference for Asia-Pacific energy transition.

Ms. Armida Salsiah Alisjahbana said that cross-border power system connectivity can accelerate the energy transition by increasing access to low-cost renewable energy resources. ESCAP members have always recognized the importance of energy interconnection, especially power interconnection. To enhance power interconnection, we need to identify new sources of grid infrastructure financing for cross-border power transmission projects, and enable more cross-border electricity trading, especially multilateral and multidirectional trading, to establish regional competitive markets for electricity.

In the research report titled Opportunities and Outlook on Power Interconnection in the Asia-Pacific Region issued at this Forum, GEIDCO introduced the development of power interconnection in the Asia-Pacific Region, and proposed an innovative roadmap for Asia-Pacific power interconnection under the framework of Global Energy Interconnection (GEI). The report will provide solutions for Asia-Pacific countries to cope with energy issues and promote the coordinated and sustainable development of economy, society and environment. According to the report, the average annual growth rate of electricity consumption in the Asia-Pacific Region will come to 4.6% from 2021 to 2035 and 3% from 2036 to 2050, respectively. The installed capacity of power supply will reach total 9.88 TW by 2035 and 16.83 TW by 2050. According to the report, the power interconnection is an essential part of Asia-Pacific infrastructure development and innovation. It enables large-scale sharing of high-quality clean energy and ensures clean, safe, cost-effective and efficient supply of energy and electricity, thus catalyzing the development of relevant industries and regional win-win cooperation.