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Governing the Power Sector

An Assessment of Electricity Governance in Thailand

The Thai assessment was completed by the Health Systems Research Institute in partnership with Palang Thai, the Thailand Environment Institute, and King Prajadhipok's Institute. This report examines efforts to privatize the electricity sector.

Executive Summary

The Thai power sector has been dominated by three government-owned enterprises since 1970’s. The first is the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT), responsible for generation and transmission. The other two are Metropolitan Electricity Authority (MEA) and Provincial Electricity Authority (PEA), responsible for distribution and retail services for the Greater Bangkok and the rest of the country respectively. Even though, the security of supply has been quite stable for a long time, there are many serious inefficiencies and problems associated with the sector. The tariff structure allows the utilities to pass on many unfair burdens to consumers, including burdens from “Take-or-Pay” contracts or increased generation cost due to errors in gas supply. Also, competition in power generation has been limited, mainly due to the monopoly power of EGAT. Moreover, many power plants have substantial impacts on the environment and local livelihood. These have led to severe social conflicts over new power plant projects and coal mining and gas exploration and pipeline projects as well.

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