Cambodian garment factories are urged to switch to solar energy
The European Chamber of Commerce in Cambodia (EuroCham) has called on the Cambodian garment industry to accelerate the adoption of renewable energy, install solar panels on roofs, and convert factory electricity to solar energy, which will make its products more competitive. . EuroCham representatives expressed the above views to industry leaders, development partners, government officials, etc. who were invited to participate in a meeting organized by the Garment Manufacturers Association of Cambodia (GMAC). Currently, there are more than 6,000 garment exporters in Cambodia, directly employing about 700,000 workers.
GMAC representatives said at the meeting that the use of solar energy can attract new orders and increase production, which can maintain the competitiveness of Cambodian products. GMAC actively assists Cambodia as a production center for different products and make Cambodian products more competitive. If Cambodian manufacturers cannot compete with other manufacturing centers, they may be forced to close their factories.
Coal, natural gas, and oil prices continue to rise due to logistical obstacles and geopolitical pressures. The current cost of solar energy is estimated at 2.67 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh), and the cost of coal-fired energy is 7.7 cents per kilowatt hour. It is estimated that Cambodia’s energy demand will triple by 2040. All of the above are conducive to the adoption of solar energy by Cambodian garment factories. In addition, China, South Korea, and Japan have refused to provide financing for future coal power generation projects, which shows that investing in renewable energy is an inevitable trend and international investors are moving in the direction of renewable energy.
Sok Khavan, Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Mines and Energy of Cambodia, said that the ministry is fully committed to renewable energy. Currently, renewable energy accounts for 52% of Cambodia’s energy structure. The proportion of solar energy in Cambodia has increased from about 10 megawatts (MW) in 2019 to 400 megawatts (MW) this year, a 40-fold increase in the past three years, and is striking a balance between sustainable energy and affordable energy. . Deputy Minister Khavan said that in addition to cost reduction factors for the huge growth of solar energy, the ministry has established relevant regulations on charging for solar capacity installed on rooftops, which have been implemented.
The European Chamber of Commerce in Cambodia has more than 300 members from 11 European countries, forming 5 chapters. Tassilo Brinzer, chairman of the association, said that the manufacturing and construction industries adopt green technologies It is very important to make enterprises more competitive, modern and resilient. Especially for the garment industry, the use of green energy is very important. Because modern middle-class customers from Asia, Europe, the United States, and Japan continue to demand sustainable products. For Cambodia, developing solar power is an opportunity for better business, jobs, new investment, and growth.
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