Consumers will be encouraged to use more compact fluorescent light-bulbs, in hopes that demand for them will meet 20 million units in three years - four times higher than currently - in line with the countrys energy-saving policy.
Bunpot Sangkeo, assistant governor for demand side management at the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (Egat), said yesterday that the Energy Ministry would offer incentives for local production in a bid to reduce imports.
Egat has already discussed with Asia Lamp Industry and Lee Kijchareon Seang about changing their production processes from incandescent to compact fluorescent bulbs.
They would be guaranteed a quota of 50 per cent of all bulbs to carry the ministrys 5-star energy-saving label. The remaining labels will be provided to 10 firms already importing the bulbs.
Egat will also help the manufacturers to distribute these bulbs via retailers such as 7-Eleven convenience stores and Tesco Lotus supermarkets.
Egat has already discussed this matter with the retail stores, Bunpot said.
The locally made bulbs will be priced at Bt55, which is near that of imports.
It is believed that the producers can have profits, he said, adding that their 50-per-cent quota would run for three years. Importers would also bring down their prices, otherwise it could be hard for them to move the bulbs, he said.
Imported bulbs now sell for about Bt120 each.
The Energy Ministry has Bt80 million from the Energy Conservation Fund to campaign on the importance of saving energy by using low-pressure lights through such media as television, radio and newspapers until the end of this year.
Egat will sign contracts with the two companies for 800,000 compact fluorescent bulbs to be given away to people all over the country in November.
Egat wants people to try free samples of the bulbs to restore their confidence in their quality, labelled with the 5 logo, he said in the expectation that the next bulb after the free one burns out will be another energy-saving one.
Incandescent bulbs cost only Bt15, and about 30 million are in use in the country.
If people change their behaviour of using incandescent bulbs to compact-fluorescent bulbs, the country will save 1.5 billion units of electricity a year, accounting for Bt4.5 billion a year or equivalent to a Bt10-billion 300-megawatt power plant, he said.
Created by Rebecca Appleton on 20th June, 2007
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