Solar panels are pictured on the roof of a building in Bangkok in this Aug. 9, 2017 file photo. (Reuters Photo/Athit Perawongmetha)

Asean's Power Landscape Expected to Transform in 2019

BY : SHEANY

JANUARY 23, 2019

Jakarta. Member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations are on a path to transform their power landscapes as energy demand continues to rise to match the region's economic growth potential, a power management company said this week.

"In the pursuit of a robust digital economy, Asean is heralding in an era of unprecedented innovation … 2019 will see power play an indispensable role in shaping the evolution of the region's economy," Ireland-based power management company Eaton said in a statement.

In Southeast Asia, technology will have to meet increasing demand for clean, renewable energy and remote power management, support the arrival of 5G connectivity, and provide resilience against growing cyberthreats.

Asean's evolving energy demand, which according to the International Energy Agency will grow by almost two-thirds by 2040, will go together with the projected boom in the region as part of the fourth industrial revolution.

Development of the region's smart cities network has already made way for some significant changes in regional power management, Eaton said.

"We are seeing a seismic shift in the region's power management outlook as cities gear up on technology as the foundation of smart and sustainable urban development," the company said.

Eaton said batteries would continue to develop in this part of the world beyond their traditional use as a backup energy source.

"At present, heavy investments in Asean are being made in preparation for such technologies in the years to come," the company said.

Singapore, for example, has embarked on a public-private partnership through its Energy Market Authority to speed up the deployment of energy storage systems.

Though new technology seems to demand new assets, Eaton also highlighted the importance of making the most of existing assets.

"Only by devising new and innovative solutions can the industry progress amid drastic changes in power demand and supply," the company said in the statement.

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Asean power grid