May 23 (Xinhua)
PHNOM PENH-- Leaders of ASEAN power utilities and authorities gathered on Thursday to follow up the progress of the ambitious ASEAN power grid action plan, which was set to inter-connect power lines in the 10 ASEAN member states by 2020.
Speaking to reporters after the opening of the 29th meeting of the Heads of ASEAN Power Utilities and Authorities Council, Keo Rottanak, director general of the Electricity of Cambodia, said the meeting enabled the bloc's member states to be informed of the latest development and development objectives of the energy sector in each ASEAN country.
"Heads of ASEAN power utilities will discuss ways to accelerate the development of energy sector in order to fully realize ASEAN power grid by 2020 under the ASEAN Vision 2020," he said.
Meanwhile, Rottanak said that by 2020, about 80 percent of the Cambodian population would be able to access to electricity.
Ith Praing, secretary of state at Cambodian Ministry of Industry, Mines and Energy, said that the regional power grid inter-connection would be the main driver for green energy and reduced damages to the environment.
"To achieve this objective, it requires a more effective framework of regional cooperation," he said at the meeting.
Musa Bin Metali, acting director of the Department of Electrical Services of Brunei, said at the meeting that ASEAN power grid was still a big task for ASEAN.
"We have yet to accomplish the realization of the ASEAN power grip," he said, adding that some issues need to be addressed including regulations, commercial, legal, and technical standards, and other related matters.
He urged all ASEAN states to increase all efforts in sharing energy information, technology and know-how in order to realize the ambitious goal for the prosperous future of ASEAN.
Founded in 1967, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) groups Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.