Sarawak aiming to be Asean renewable energy powerhouse, Sharbini tells Asean Business Energy Forum

Sharbini (third row, right) speaks on renewable hydropower development in Sarawak at the Ministers-CEOs Dialogue of the Asean Energy Business Forum.

KUCHING, Sept 21: Sarawak is working towards realising its ambition of becoming a renewable energy powerhouse in Asean through multiple initiatives including power exchanges with neighbouring countries and working to establish the Borneo and Asean grids.

Sarawak Energy Group chief executive officer (CEO) Datu Sharbini Suhaili highlighted this at the recently concluded hybrid Asean Energy Business Forum (AEBF) held in conjunction with the 40th Asean Ministers On Energy Meeting in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

“Sarawak is sharing the benefits of renewable hydropower with neighbours through power exchange agreements – working towards realising the Borneo and Asean grids for energy security at the regional level.

“This will require consistent and purposeful collaborations across the public and private spheres. Partnerships are key to addressing the energy trilemma and achieving our sustainability goals at the regional level so everyone can work together towards a shared prosperity for Asean,” he said during a strategic dialogue session.

According to a media release today, Sharbini was amongst policymakers and global energy industry business leaders who attended the forum virtually to share experiences, and discuss strategies and actionable commitments to help the region’s energy future.

The forum themed ‘Accelerating Energy Transition – Economic Recovery & Sustainable Growth’ also saw participation from Asean Centre for Energy executive director Dr Nuki Agya Utama, Undersecretary of State, Ministry of Mines and Energy Cambodia H.E Victor Jona, Malaysia Energy Commission CEO Abdul Razib Dawood, EU-Asean Business Council executive director Chris Humprey, and World Nuclear Association director-general Dr Sama Bilbao Y Leon, among others.

Sharbini also shared Sarawak Energy’s experience in renewable hydropower development and how this has addressed Sarawak’s energy trilemma to ensure energy security, sustainability and affordability.

“Sarawak Energy’s customers enjoy the lowest average tariffs in Malaysia and amongst the most competitive unsubsidised tariffs in the region,” he said.

Acknowledging that developments in the energy sector are strongly driven by sustainability, with a strong focus on Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) aspects, Sharbini emphasised that climate change, environmental challenges, technological innovation as well as policies and regulations are key considerations for any responsible energy developer.

Sharbini also shared that the Sarawak government’s Post-Covid-19 Development Strategy (PCDS) 2030 has identified the renewable energy sector as a key pillar for accelerated, sustainable economic growth to achieve Sarawak’s developed status by 2030.

His live session followed a keynote address he delivered on the first day of the forum on “Hydropower in the Energy Transition: Powering Sarawak and Beyond”.

Also speaking at the forum from Sarawak Energy were executive vice president for strategy and corporate development Ting Ching Zung, in the ‘Renewables Leaders Panel: Unpacking Asean’s RE Potentials to Accelerate Energy Transition’ session as well as head of sustainability Mohd Irwan Aman, who participated in the ‘Global Leaders Panel: The Age of Power Transformation and Carbon Capture, Utilisation and Storage: Practical Approaches to Asean’s Energy Transition Pathways’ session. — DayakDaily