April 20, 2015 – United Overseas Bank (UOB) announced on Monday (Apr 20) a financing agreement with Singapore-based company Royal GK – a company commissioned to help meet Myanmar’s rising demand for energy.
Royal GK, an engineering procurement and construction company, was contracted by the Myanmar Central Power Co (MCPC) to procure gas engines for the construction of a gas-fired electricity power plant in Hlawga, Yangon.
The Myanmar government has identified investment in the power sector as a priority to meet the rising demand for reliable sources of energy for households and businesses. According to the Asian Development Bank, only a quarter of Myanmar’s population of 51 million people currently has access to electricity.
Mr Ian Wong, Managing Director and Head of Group Strategy and International Management at UOB, said the bank’s business approach for Myanmar is to partner its clients in investing in industries that the country deems necessary to support its long-term economic growth.
“As Myanmar has prioritised the provision of power in the creation of new industries and job opportunities for the country, we are keen to finance companies such as Royal GK to help support the infrastructural needs of the country’s economic transformation,” he said.
The power plant is expected to start producing 175,000 megawatt-hours (MWh) of electricity per year when it is completed in June this year, said UOB.
Mr Zeya Mon, Director of Royal GK, said: “We are delighted to expand our operations here in Myanmar and to help serve the country’s increasing demand for electricity. This is a significant milestone for us, and UOB has been instrumental to this project by supporting us with funding from Singapore.”
The signing of the financing agreement with Royal GK is one of several companies UOB has financed to provide electricity to Myanmar, the bank said.
Last year, it financed Singapore-based Asiatech Energy in building a combined cycle gas-fired power plant in Mon State, Myanmar.
The bank has also partnered US-based APR Energy in their construction of a 100 MW power plant in the Mandalay region of Myanmar. The APR Energy contract was the first power generation agreement signed by a US-based company with the government of Myanmar since the lifting of sanctions in 2013.
UOB is one of nine foreign banks to receive a Foreign Bank License from the Central Bank of Myanmar in October last year.