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    Singapore passes bill to secure energy supplies

Summary

The move follows a spike in power prices in Singapore, which has been hit hard by the global energy supply crunch.

by: Shardul Sharma

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Singapore passes bill to secure energy supplies

Singapore's parliament on November 2 passed a bill to provide the Energy Market Authority (EMA) with more powers to secure adequate electricity supply in the future. The move follows a spike in power prices in Singapore, which has been hit hard by the global energy supply crunch.

The Energy (Resilience Measures and Miscellaneous) Bill seeks to amend the Energy Market Authority of Singapore Act, the Electricity Act and the Gas Act “to safeguard energy security by enabling the Energy Market Authority of Singapore to, among other things, construct, acquire and manage electricity infrastructure required for the generation, import or export of electricity.”

The bill also enables the EMA to implement policies to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases in the generation, transmission, import, export, or supply of electricity; enhance protection of critical electricity and gas infrastructure, and to make various technical amendments.

The energy infrastructure that the bill refers to includes energy storage and transmission infrastructure as well as open-cycle gas turbines (OCGTs). The existing OCGTs in Singapore are more than 30 years old and are “long overdue” for replacement, the second minister for trade and industry Tan See Leng said in parliament, the local media reported.

“These quick response units are necessary for the security and reliability of our electricity system. However, there is little private sector interest to build these units as they are less competitive compared to combined cycle gas turbines,” CNA quoted the minister as saying.

“This amendment is worded broadly to provide EMA with the flexibility to react to the wide range of scenarios which may undermine the security, stability and reliability of our energy sector,” said the minister. “Our preference is for the private sector to build, own and operate the electricity infrastructure.”