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Cambodia’s solar conditions are excellent, even in the rainy season. With one of the lowest electrification rates in the region, there are plenty of opportunities for the sector in un-electrified area’s. In electrified area’s the need for solar solutions exists because of the high electricity prices and the fact that grid supply cannot keep up with the increasing electricity demand.

SEAC gathered some of the key data on energy and solar energy in Cambodia:

Key data on Energy in Cambodia…

  • Electrification rate: 85% of Communes but only 60% of households in 2014. This rate grows yearly as in 2003, only 6.5% of communes and 5% of households were electrified. In 2014, it concerned 85% of communes and 60% of households.

  • The goverment of Cambodia set up targets for electrification in the country. At least 70% of all Cambodian households will have to have access to grid quality electricity by the year 2030 and 100% to be electrified by 2020, any kind of electricity.

  • Meanwhile, the number of customers increased by 17% annually between 2003 and 2014, whether a 6-fold increase.

  • Grid development started in 2007

  • Generation capacity is growing since, with 308MW installed in 2009 and 1584 in 2014.

  • Despite this and its resources, Cambodia relies heavily on import. In 2010, imported electricity accounted for 42% of the total electricity production. Vietnam was the first supplier with 67% of the total, followed by Thailand, 32%, and Lao PDR, 1%.

  • Cambodia has one of the highest electricity costs in the ASEAN, apart from the Philipines. This represents a competitive disadvantage for its energy-intensive industries such as garments, which amounts to 32.5% of Cambodia’s GDP.

sources: Government-private sector Forum, Cambodia: in depth study on electricity cost and supplies : Final Report, March 2015; Victor Jona, Cambodian Energy Status and its development, 2011

and on Solar Energy in Cambodia:

  • Cambodia’s solar potential is among the best of the ASEAN countries.

  • The technical potential for solar in Cambodia: 65 GWh.

  • However the solar installed capacity is currently 2MW only.

  • Meanwhile, the solar energy potential is 5kWh/day (6-9hours/ day of average sunshine duraction).

  • At the moment, Cambodia does not have any specific targets or policies for Renewable Energies, even if it supports the ASEAN target of 15% installed capacity in 2015.

  • LCOE (Levelized Cost of Energy) for solar power generation is estimated to be between $0.166/kWh-$0.175/kWh.

Sources: John McKinley and Richard de Ferranti for Mekong Strategic Partners, Switching on: Cambodia’s Path to Sustainable Energy, January 2016; Toch Sovanna, The potential of RE in Cambodia, 2012, Asian Development  Bank, , Renewable Energy Developments and Potential in the Greater Mekong Subregion, 2015

 

Some reports also focus on solar energy in Cambodia, here are the more relevant:

de Ferranti, R., D. Fulbrook, J. McGinley, S. Higgins (2016), Switching On Cambodia’s Path to Sustainable Energy Security, Mekong Strategic Partners, January 2016, Phnom Penh.

PicoSol Cambodia, The Solar Roadmap for Cambodia: How to scale up solar diffusion in Cambodia? Strategy formulated by stakeholders, Rogier van Mansvelt, June 2011.

Government-private sector Forum, Cambodia in depth study on electricity cost and supplies Final Report, March 2015.

 

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