AIT director talks up major energy deal with Taiwan

Brent Christensen says US will cooperate with Taiwan on energy transition

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Tatan Power Plant (Wikipedia Commons)

Tatan Power Plant (Wikipedia Commons)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Director of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT), Brent Christensen said he expects the US to work with Taiwan on building the country's energy infrastructure, at contract signing ceremony for an expansion project between the Taiwan Power Company (Taipower) and General Electric (GE) Tuesday (June 11).

According to United Daily News (聯合報), Taipower had purchased two units of gas-powered generators from GE costing NT$37.5 billion (US$1.2 billion) for Tatan Power Plant (大潭電廠). Yang Wei-fuu(楊偉甫), chairman of Taipower and John Rice, GE’s chairman of GE’s gas power business signed the contract at the United States Capitol Building in Washington, with Senator Lindsay Graham (R-SC), Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) and AIT director Christensen in presence.

Afterward, Yang said that the two new units should begin operating in 2022 and 2023, and would supply increasing demand for electric power, as Taiwanese investors return from China amid U.S.-China trade tensions.

Yang emphasized that energy transition is an important policy for the Taiwan government. Many U.S. companies are already involved in project, Yang said, and hoped that more would take part in the future.

Christensen added that the US expects to work with Taiwan as it makes an energy transition, and expressed his wish that there will be more joint projects between Taipower and GE.

Senator Lindsay said that the democratic Taiwan is both a great trading partner and military ally of the US.

Rice said that Taiwan is a strategically important country to GE. Given the country's 2025 nuclear-free policy, Rice said this provided opportunity for GE's gas-powered generators and renewable energy solutions.