Development of the Nam Hinboun Downstream Hydro Power project:
Prior to the formation of Rasita Power Co.,Ltd., Rasita Sand and Gravel Co.,Ltd. headed by Mr Somphone Oudone did the initial works of exploration and investigation for a small Hydro Power project in Nam Hinboun river which finally led to identification of the Nam Hinboun Downstream Hydro Power project of 15MW capacity. The preliminary topology survey around the area and elevation check were done with the help of Thomas Granderath to determine if a project can be set up.
A Pre-Feasibility study of the project was made so as to enable the promoter to apply for allocation from the Government and to sign the MOU. The MOU was signed with the Department for Investment of the Khammouane Province in June, 2011 for the construction of a 5 MW Run Off The River (ROR) Hydro Power project which would cost about 8 million USD as per thumb rule estimation.
Subsequently, Rasita Power Co.,Ltd. was formed and it was decided to carry out a detailed Feasibility Study. Proposals from 4(four) companies were invited and finally Engineering and Research Institute of Sichuan University of China was selected for the job based on its reputation and wide experiences and expertise on low head Dam since the propose project indicates to be a low head one. The amount of the contract for whole design was originally 2 500 000 CNY. The field work of topological survey, geological study, geo-technical investigation, collection hydrological data was entrusted to the joint venture of Lamson and Vietha. This Vietnamese joint venture Lamson and Vietha has previous experiences of working in Laos and more particularly in Nam Theun-Hinboun and Nam Hinboun projects which are located in the upstream of the Nam Hinboun Downstream project. Lamson and Vietha also agreed to carry out the Feasibility study with extra of USD 80000.
Thus two Feasibility Study Reports were generated by the two parties. Both the reports indicate that the project is feasible and economically viable. Both recommend the project to be 15 MW capacity with an investment of 36.7 million USD as per the Chinese assessment and 42 million USD assessed by the Vietnamese.
The Initial Environmental Assessment (IEA) was launched and entrusted to ESL Environment-Sustainability-Livelihood and its Executive Director Dr Nanong Khotphathoum for a price of 132000 USD which he invested in to the equity of the company.
The IEA was licensed by the Environment Department of the Khammouane in 12th November, 2013.
The Project Development Agreement (PDA) was signed with the Department for investment of the Khammouane Province in 29 August 2013.
The following options were left to explore and were thoroughly studied before deciding the project to be owned by a Lao limited company with shareholders with a capacity of 15 MW :
• A 5 Megawatt dam at 8 million USD to a 15 Megawatt dam at 36.7millons USD
• A Sole Co. Ltd to a Company Ltd with shareholders
• A Lao company for a lifetime ownership of the dam to a multinational company with a Concession Agreement of 50 years