TNB to divest plants

Malaysian power utility Tenaga Nasional Bhd (TNB) has identified five power plants for divestment under its restructuring plan. The company has denied that the main aim of the sale is to raise cash to service its debts.

The move follows the announcement early in December 1998 that it was selling the 330 MW Tanjung Kling power plant in Malacca to Powertek Bhd, and a 40 per cent stake in the Sultan Salahuddin plant in Kapar to an unknown independent power producer.

TNB says the asset sale will help restructure the industry and improve cost-effectiveness. Revenue from the sales will be used to pay for investments and capital expenditure as well as loan repayments.

The company is aiming to move out of power generation and focus more on transmission and distribution. It will not divest any of its hydropower stations, which will be owned and operated by subsidiary TNBG Hydro.

The power plants up for sale include Connaught Bridge, Paka and Pasir Gudang.