CAPTION: Mr. Lee Jun Hyung, CEO for GIMCO (Fiji), Tropik Woods CEO, Faiz Khan and PM Bainimarama.
The formalisation today of a joint venture between Tropik Wood Industries and Korean company GIMCO is poised to bring in an initial investment of $3 million through the use of waste wood for biomass production.
The contract was signed before Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and Fiji’s Ambassador to South Korea, His Excellency Filimone Kau. This is the first step towards the Tropik Wood providing wood chips for biomass to the Korean investor.
This wood chip is a waste material for the company but as the chief executive officer and chairman of Tropik Woods Mr Faiz Khan said, “there is no such thing as waste in today’s market”.
“This joint venture agreement is about developing biomass energy plants in Fiji and we are thinking of exporting biomass from our Wairiki plant and also looking at developing rural gasification,” he said while outlining the company plans in the future.
He added that they want to start their project in Nabouwalu because although there is a power grid there, they still use diesel generator to supply power to Nabouwalu town.
On Fiji’s move to go green or seeking alternative energy sources, Mr Khan said the venture will also substitute Fiji’s reliance on fossil fuels to alternative means that are available to Fiji.
The Korean company will also be assisting Tropik Woods to revive its own troubled bio-mass energy plant in Drasa which is worth $33m but has not been beneficial as it has burnt down twice in the past couple of years.
GIMCO Fiji chief executive officer Jae Suk Song said they were planning to expand their business in Fiji especially in the area of independent power producers (IPP).
“We are also interested to assist Fiji in their rural electrification projects through the department of energy and our people can help with the skills training for the local people in this area,” he said.
GIMCO specialises in cogeneration plants based on LNG, biomass systems in the multi-MW range, ESCO schemes, high efficient industrial furnaces, biomass gasification and air pollution control systems.