For many years Thailand has focused on increasing energy generation so that it could power its industrial growth and meet the energy needs of an increasingly prosperous society. Achieving this objective was a requirement in terms of sustaining economic growth and, so far, the country’s energy production has succeeded at keeping pace. Thailand has one of the highest electrification rates in South-east Asia. As a percentage of total generating capacity, the share claimed by hydropower has dropped considerably, from 21.8% in 1986 to 3.1% in 2013. Demand for natural gas has recently outstripped Thailand’s supply of dry gas, forcing the country to increasingly rely on imports of more expensive liquefied natural gas (LNG). Capacity will grow, but renewables, LNG, imports and conservation will play a greater role in helping the country meet its energy needs. Overall, the sector may become more interesting, as new solutions will be required to sustain ongoing economic growth, while at the same time appeasing the environmental demands of the people.
This chapter contains interviews with Pailin Chuchottaworn, CEO, PTT Group; Veerasak Kositpaisal, CEO and President, Thai Oil; and Wandee Khunchornyakong, CEO and President, SPCG.