Sarawak will enough electricity for domestic use even after exporting to Singapore, Sabah by 2032, says state minister

Malay Mail
Malay Mail

KUCHING, Nov 27 — The export of electricity to Singapore and Sabah will not affect the supply for domestic consumption, Utilities and Telecommunications Minister Datuk Seri Julaihi Narawi said today.

He said the export of power to Singapore and Sabah, by 2032, only constitutes 12 per cent or 1,130 megawatts (MW) from an estimated 9,529 MW to be generated by the state.

“This means that by 2032, based on the projection, we still have enough electricity power of 8,399 MW or 88 per cent for local use and needs in Sarawak,” he said in his winding-up speech in the state legislative assembly.

He said this includes the reserve margin of about 22 to 25 per cent.

He said the state is currently exporting 2 per cent out of 5,745 MW of electricity to West Kalimantan.

He said with the export of the excess electricity, Sarawak has the opportunity to increase its income to empower development efforts including utility infrastructure in line with the aspiration of the Post Covid-19 Development Strategy 2030 (PCDS 2030) and to make Sarawak a renewable energy hub in the Asean region.

“In line with the PCDS 2030, a total of 15 per cent of Sarawak's electricity sector income is targeted to be derived from the international market through renewable energy,” he added.

He said the forecast demand for domestic, commercial and industrial electricity is expected to increase to 6,600 Megawatts (MW) in 2030.

“Of this total, 2,221 MW or 34 per cent will be from domestic users, while the remaining 4,379 MW or 66 per cent are users under Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) and Power Exchange Agreement (PEA),” Julaihi said.

He added several new power generation construction projects and transmission line systems are currently and will be implemented to meet the increased demand.

“This includes the construction of the Baleh Hydro Dam, which is expected to increase the total generation to 8,290 MW when it becomes fully operational in 2030,” he said.

He said since 2016, Sarawak has been exporting electricity to West Kalimantan with a capacity limit (nominated peak capacity) of up to 230 MW under a regional cooperation initiative BIMP-EAGA.

He said in addition, an electricity sales agreement with Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd (SESB) was signed in August 2021 to supply electricity as much as 130MW.

He said the sale of electricity to Singapore by 2032 has already been agreed between the government of Malaysia and the government of Singapore.

“This project involves the installation of an estimated 720 km long submarine cable from Tondong, Sarawak straight to Changi, Singapore,” he said, adding that the submarine cable interconnection will go through the Muri-Midai corridor, Indonesia.

He said the agreement related to the Muri-Midai corridor was signed by Malaysia and Indonesia in 1983.

“It is estimated that 80 per cent of the cable will cross the Muri-Midai corridor, Indonesia while the remaining 20 per cent will pass through the waters of Malaysia and Singapore,” he said, adding that the cable project will be underwritten by Singapore.