The Myanmar government plans to focus efforts on building 20 hydropower plants within the Ayeyarwady River basin, according to HydroPower news on February 27.
Myanmar has numerous hydroelectric projects in development, but last December it received a US$100 million [K100 billion} credit from the World Bank’s International Development Association after forming administrative apparatus in the public, private and scientific sectors to manage and develop the Ayeyarwady River basin.
The country's hydroelectric sector accounts for 74 percent of overall power generation and part of the credit will be used for feasibility studies on hydroelectric infrastructure.
Ayeyarwady is Myanmar’s largest river and most important commercial waterway. It flows from north to south in a relatively straight direction for about 2,170 km [1,348 miles] before emptying through the Ayeyarwady Delta into the Andaman Sea.
The World Energy Council estimates the hydropower potential of Myanmar’s four main rivers – Ayeyarwady, Thanlwin, Chindwin and Sittaung - at 100,000 MW, but said that less than 10 percent of the potential has been harnessed.