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POWER SECTOR helps mountainous socioeconomic development

WEDnesday - 07/01/2015 10:24 - Viewed: 1172

Son La Power Company (PC Son La) Deputy Director Pham Van Long said that before 1990 the provincial power infrastructure was almost non-existent. Only Son La Town and some other nearby regions had access to electricity which was run off diesel and a small hydropower plant with capacity of just 2MW. The power output was very low and unstable, with a 40 percent rate of power loss.

However, thanks to efforts by provincial leaders and the Vietnamese power industry, after the establishment of PC Son La, the board of directors mapped out a long-term plan to develop the local power infrastructure, focusing on 110kV grid transmission line projects from Hoa Binh to Moc Chau District (1996), Son La Town (1997), Muong La and Phu Yen districts (2004), Thuan Chau District (2007), and Song Ma District (2014). By late 2005, the power grid covered the entire network of provincial communes and towns. However, the ratio of households connected to the national power grid still remained low, at just 75.2 by the end of 2010.
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Electricity helps rural people do business and increase incomes
As such, a target of connecting 95 percent of households to the national grid by the end of 2015 was set. In line with this goal, the power industry selected communes and villages in remote areas to help draft the project to “Supply national grid coverage to ethnic groups in Son La Province”. This project received prime ministerial approval, and aimed to provide electricity to 31,000 households in 106 communes and 11 districts and cities.
To date, 70 communes in 10 districts have been connected to the national grid, raising the ratio of connected local residents to 83.34 percent. Asides from the construction of a power grids for ethnic groups, PC Son La has also served 218,032 customers and is gradually improving service quality in even the most remote areas.
Power resources for further development
Son La Province People’s Committee Deputy Chairman Bui Duc Hai said that prior to 1990, Son La was a poor province with a low socioeconomic development level, despite boasting the second largest expanse of natural land in the country. However, after 20 years, it has risen to become a highlight of the northwestern region in terms of economic development, renowned for products like tea, corn, milk, and rubber. This achievement was largely thanks to the important contributions of the power industry which contributed over 50 percent of the provincial state budget and became a power resource to boost local socioeconomic development.
Since the advent of power in the province, local people have benefited more from state and party policies, and have been able to apply hi-tech innovations into production and business. It has also gradually reduced poverty and improved living conditions, as well as elevating security, social order, and national defense. “In a mountainous province like Son La, in addition to the investment in the transport infrastructure, the power system is considered the main breakthrough that has created a foundation for local socioeconomic development, especially in the remote and border areas,” Bui Duc Hai added.
However, despite these achievements, many thousands of households in Son La Province are still without electricity. The provincial people’s committee and power industry are hoping for more state support, especially in the allocation of investment capital, so that PC Son La can fulfill its goal of 99 percent of local people connected to the national grid by 2020.         
 

Source: By Ven.vn