In the beginning of the 1960s only 10 percent of the Thai population had access to electricity. To foster the economic development of the country, however, and to raise the living standard of its population the expansion of the power supply system constituted an indispensible prerequisite. In order to achieve this ambitious goals Thailand received financial and technical assistance from a multitude of donors – Japan, UNO, Colombo-Plan and also from Germany.
In this context, in September 1962 the Advisory Group Lahmeyer was charged – within the framework of Thai-German technical cooperation – to assist and advise Thai authorities, in particular the Provincial Electricity Authority, in matters of supply, planning and further extension of the electric energy distributing system including reorganization of administration and tariffs, laying stress on guidance and advice of the Thai management and its staff.
Priority area of the German advisory team was the planning of medium tension distribution projects (e.g. Yanhee Area 1st and 2nd stage, Nam Pong Area, etc.), but they were also active in the supervision of construction, the setting-up of regulations and standards as well as in developing the PEA’s administrative and organizational structure.
Based on these activities – and fostered by German capital assistance – during the 8 years of the project a significant expansion of the power grid could be achieved: the number of consumers of the PEA more than doubled and electricity consumption increased 12-fold. Furthermore the reorganization of the commercial sector has favorably influenced PEA’s economic result as its share in total cost constantly declined.