Tech Talents is a Key to Success

For the energy sector, using innovations to increase production efficiency is not a new idea. Realizing that electricity is a crucial factor for the country’s development, the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT) has always looked for technologies and innovations that enhance production efficiency.

The authority is seeking to help startups develop technology that can make energy production more efficient and less costly.

However, EGAT realises the crucial role human resources, or developing new talent, is in helping to build new startups.

Dr Somchai Chokmaviroj, assistant director of EGAT’s Renewable and New Energy Research and Business Development Division, said: “Of course, we are in need of new technological ideas or innovations that enhance our operational efficiency and boost our competitiveness. However, we need to build tech talents first before we think of building startups.”

“We have to find inventor to get the invention.” Dr Somchai noted.

EGAT has joined hands with the National Innovation Agency to help develop startups and tech talents in response to the government’s Thailand 4.0 economic policy that wants to boost the competitiveness of the country.

One of its efforts is by supporting the Startup Thailand 2018 event to learn of new ideas, technology and innovations while also supporting for young people who have great potential to become tech talents.

“Startups understand people’s needs more than large organisations. They are better at initiating ideas that serve consumers’ needs than we are. We can help them expand their ideas, create prototypes to test at market and expand to ASEAN and global markets, not only domestic markets,” Somchai said.

He noted that it’s worth the investment to help startups achieve success, as it brings significant benefits to society.

The goals of EGAT in developing knowledge and ideas from startups cover six areas including:

  • Innovation that can replace reliance on imports; so Thailand can change from importer to becoming a producer and exporter.
  • Innovation that can balance the peak load of electricity usage; while the use of solar energy can reduce energy consumption during the daytime, there’s no such alternative for night-time. EGAT is currently overloaded at peak usage times occurring at night, causing a high cost of production.
  • Ideas to commercialise innovative renewable energy such as hydrogen energy; EGAT believes ideas from the younger generation people can help.
  • Increase efficiency in controlling electricity production costs; which can result in lower electricity bills for consumers.
  • Innovations that can solve environmental problems or ways to reduce pollution from power plants.
  • Innovations that can improve quality of living for communities surrounding power plants and make them live in harmony with each other.