Laotian government signs land lease for 390-MW Xe-Pian Xe-Namnoy hydropower project

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A 32-year land lease will allow investors to continue development of the 390-MW Xe-Pian Xe-Namnoy hydropower project in Laos’ Champassak and Attapeu provinces, has learned.

The US$830 million Xe-Pian Xe-Namnoy hydroelectric plant is a joint venture between the Laotian government (which holds a 24% share), Korea’s SK Engineering & Construction Co. Ltd. (26%), Korean Western Power Co. Ltd. (25%) and Thailand’s Ratchaburi Electric Generating Holding PLC (25%). reported the group had signed a project development agreement with the Laotian government in November 2008, which followed a series of feasibility studies, construction preparation, an environmental impact assessment and a social impact study.

Now with a land lease worth approximately $1 million, construction of Xe-Pian Xe-Namnoy (also spelled Xae Pien-Xae Nam Noi and other variations) is expected to begin in July.

When completed in 2019, officials said about 90% of the power generated by Xe-Pian Xe-Namnoy will be exported to Thailand with the remainder being kept in Laos.

The project will create a reservoir that will cover about 238 hectares in the Xe Kong River Valley and reflects Laos’ efforts to become the “battery of the region.”

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