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Wind Energy Plans $550 Million of Projects in Thailand by 2016

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Jan. 31 (Bloomberg) -- Wind Energy Holding Co., a Bangkok-based developer, plans to add 270 megawatts of wind-power plants in Thailand costing as much as $550 million as the nation seeks to boost its clean-energy production.

Wind Energy will develop three projects each with a 90-megawatt capacity in the Korat province north of Bangkok, said Aaron Daniels, vice president of business development.

Thailand, hoping to rebound from its worst floods in 70 years last year, is aiming to get 25 percent of its energy from renewables by 2022 to curb dependence on fuel imports. The nation, which offers premium payments for wind power, imports about 80 percent of its oil, according to the Ministry of Energy.

Wind Energy is looking for lenders and equity investors in the projects, Daniels said today by phone from Bangkok. The company plans to open a bidding process for the turbine supplier late this quarter or early the next, Daniels said. The projects should be connected to the grid in 2016, he said.

The company was founded by Nopporn Suppipat and has about 35 employees, Daniels said. Daniels formerly worked at Vestas Wind Systems A/S, the biggest turbine maker, in North America and China.

‘First of Kind’

Wind Energy has started work on a separate $400 million wind farm at a site nearby. The company obtained 12-year loans from Kasikornbank Pcl and Siam Commercial Bank Pcl accounting for about 70 percent of the cost, Daniels said.

“They’re a first of a kind project,” he said. “No one has done utility-scale turbine projects in Thailand before.”

Siemens AG is supplying 90 turbines each with a 2.3-megawatt capacity for the 207-megawatt project developed in equal portions called “FKW” and “KR2.” The company expects FKW to go into commercial operation in October this year and KR2 in February 2013, Daniels said.

Thailand, which grants an incentive for wind power produced, aims to install 1,200 megawatts of wind by 2021.

To contact the reporter responsible for this story: Sally Bakewell in London at Sbakewell1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Reed Landberg at landberg@bloomberg.net

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