Keywords: Asian Pacific economies, clean coal technology, debt financing
The role of coal technologies to support responsible economic growth
The Asian Pacific region is home to the fastest-growing economies in the world. These economies are expected to double gross domestic product (GDP) in the next decade, and coal will play a major role as the primary energy source for electric power. The tremendous projected financial burden associated with the installation of new, coal-fired electric power facilities to fuel this unprecedented economic growth has focused efforts to identify existing and new sources of financing for major thermal power projects that are efficient and environmentally responsible. The economics are trying to accelerate economic development and promote the leveraging of in-country resources to meet their electric power objectives. With the growth in power production will come more greenhouse gas emissions and negative environmental impacts. The means to reducing these impacts is clean coal technology, which is becoming more and more accepted for debt financing. Competition for debt financing is becoming tighter worldwide, with increased use of project financing. Representatives of the coal technology and equipment industries believe that the availability of non-recourse financing is an impediment to greater penetration of clean coal technology into electric power markets in Asian Pacific economies. Better use of existing infrastructure project financing instruments and management of risk in Asian markets are critical to the development and acceptance of clean coal technology to meet greenhouse gas abatement and economic goals.