New Energy Architecture: Myanmar

Publication | June 2013

This report is the culmination of a nine-month multistakeholder process investigating Myanmar’s energy architecture, which involved the Asian Development Bank, the World Economic Forum and Accenture, and aimed to understand the nation’s current energy architecture challenges and provide an overview of a path to a 'New Energy Architecture'.

    Developing Asia’s rising economic might and energy consumption will have far-reaching consequences for global energy markets and the environment.

This report is the culmination of a nine-month process investigating Myanmar's energy architecture, which involved the Asian Development Bank, the World Economic Forum and Accenture. The process aimed to understand the nation's current energy architecture challenges and provide an overview of a path to a 'New Energy Architecture'.

The ultimate goal is to help the country build an energy sector that is secure and sustainable, and promotes economic growth as the country makes its democratic transition. While not all recommendations can be implemented in the near term, they do provide options for creating a prioritized roadmap for Myanmar's energy transition.

South-East Asia's next frontier

Since Myanmar's reform process began in 2011, its energy architecture has seen many positive developments with a series of reforms set in motion to help its transition to democracy and integration with the global economy. If the country continues its political and economic reforms, Myanmar has the potential to emerge as South-East Asia's next frontier. The energy sector will play a pivotal role in this process.

Based on an assessment of Myanmar's current energy challenges, a series of New Energy Architecture insights have been drawn. These offer a vision for how Myanmar can deliver on its objective of crafting an energy architecture that better meets the goals of the "energy triangle", ie, achieving economic growth and development to provide energy access and security in an environmentally sustainable fashion. Some urgent short-term needs are apparent:

  • The creation of a governance structure that underpins the long-term development of the sector in line with appropriate energy sector reforms and a roadmap for the same;
  • the provision of energy to supply essential goods and services to rural communities, turn the wheels of commerce and industry, and ignite the economy by ensuring energy efficiency and expanding energy supplies. This should be done by constructing new sources of generation, transmission and distribution networks, and large-scale infrastructure to improve power supply to metropolitan areas. For rural areas, small-scale hybrid renewable systems and off-grid renewable systems should be constructed; and
  • the development of an energy sector that supports Myanmar's long-term growth.

Vision for the future

Based on discussions in Myanmar, stakeholders should seek to take the following steps to drive the transition to a New Energy Architecture:

  • Take a more inclusive, collaborative approach;
  • Establish multistakeholder partnership platforms;
  • Build clear and consistent policies; and
  • Communicate effectively with the public.

Contents 

  • Executive Summary
  • A Methodology for Managing an Effective Transition
  • Step 1: Assessing Current Energy Architecture
  • Step 2: Setting New Energy Architecture Objectives
  • Step 3: Defining the Enabling Environment
  • Step 4: Introducing Areas of Leadership
  • Appendix