China Eyes Investment in West Sumatera's Geothermal Energy  

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  • Pembangkit Listrik Tenaga Panas Bumi Dieng. TEMPO/Aris Andrianto

    Pembangkit Listrik Tenaga Panas Bumi Dieng. TEMPO/Aris Andrianto

    TEMPO.CO, Padang - The Chinese government has expressed its interest in investing in the renewable energy sector and infrastructure projects in West Sumatera.

    "West Sumatera has potential sources of renewable energy. However, the utilization of such renewable energy is hampered by the lack of infrastructures," Zhu Honghai, the consul general of China in Medan said on Wednesday, July 29, 2015.

    According to Mr. Zhu, the Chinese government will participate in infrastructure development projects in Indonesia to boost investments. Mr. Zhu added that a number sectors to be prioritized were infrastructures, geothermal energy, basic industry, agriculture and tourism.

    West Sumatera governor Irwan Prayitno said that his province has a huge potential of geothermal energy. Currently, there are 17 geothermal spots in West Sumatera that could produce up to 1,650 megawatts of electricity.

    Five of the total 17 spots have been managed by PT Supreme Energy and Turkey-based Hitay Energy.

    "The [geothermal] project is in line with the target set by the central government to boost electricity supplies,” Irwan added.

    Masrul Zein, the head of West Sumatera branch of the Investment Coordinating Board (BKPM), said that a China-based company, PT Baik Chance Multiindustry, has applied for a permit to establish a cement plant in West Sumatera. Masrul added that China was also targeting the energy sector and planning to develop a  micro-hydro power plant with a capacity of 2 megawatts.