Sarawak Energy and Petroliam Nasional Berhad (PETRONAS) entered a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) today, formalising a collaboration to explore the commercial production of green hydrogen and its value supply chain in Asia.
The signing marks a significant milestone in Sarawak’s effort to scale up and venture into energy export with hydrogen as an energy carrier to meet global clean energy demand and position Sarawak as the hub for the hydrogen value chain.
Sarawak Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi (Dr) Abang Haji Abdul Rahman Zohari bin Tun Datuk Abang Haji Openg witnessed the virtual signing ceremony between both leading energy companies that would initiate a joint techno-commercial evaluation of a large-scale hydrogen production facility.
Also present were Datuk Amar Abdul Hamed Sepawi, Sarawak Energy Chairman and Dato Haji Ibrahim Baki, PETRONAS Board of Directors.
The evaluation covers the possibility of utilising Sarawak’s renewable hydropower in the electrolysis process to produce green hydrogen and in doing this, generate Renewable Energy Certificates in support of the renewable energy market. Data sharing from this collaboration is expected to provide a measure and insights to the potential of a hydrogen supply chain in Asia.
Signing for Sarawak Energy was Datu Haji Sharbini Suhaili, Group Chief Executive Officer, witnessed by Ting Ching Zung, Executive Vice President for Strategy and Corporate Development.
Signing for PETRONAS was Adnan Zainal Abidin, Executive Vice President and Chief Executive Officer for Gas & New Energy, witnessed by Adlan Ahmad, Head of Hydrogen Business at PETRONAS.
Commenting on the memorandum of understanding, the Chief Minister said the Sarawak Government was always supportive of hydrogen-related collaborations and research as it firmly believes in the future of hydrogen as a competitive fuel source.
“As you know, we have started with Sarawak Energy and the relevant parties to explore the potential of hydrogen and how to produce hydrogen based on the renewable energy resources available in Sarawak. I am confident hydrogen has a key role in a sustainable energy future although production cost is currently high. Over time and with efficient production technology, there is a possibility that the (hydrogen) production cost will reduce so that it is competitive with other available fuels for the world,” he said.
Commending Sarawak Energy and PETRONAS for collaborating to undertake the commercial study and identify the direction of hydrogen production and its significant role in the new economy that emphasises clean energy and the environment, the Chief Minister added, “It is my hope therefore that clean energy becomes our main target in our process to transform our economy and from Sarawak’s perspective, add value to the resources that we have. We can exploit its potential based on the world’s need and as a green approach.”
Meanwhile, Sharbini described the collaboration as another significant milestone in line with Sarawak’s aspiration to venture into hydrogen production and utilisation across the various industries.
“Sarawak Energy believes strategic collaborations like this will benefit all of us in many ways including strengthening our research capabilities and broaden our knowledge in hydrogen-related technology and development as we adapt to the inevitable shift to renewables in the global energy landscape,” he said.
PETRONAS’ venture into the hydrogen business forms a part of the Company’s newly declared aspiration of achieving Net Zero Carbon Emissions by 2050, in support of the energy transition towards cleaner energy sources and as part of the company’s approach to sustainability which balances Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) considerations.
PETRONAS President and Group Chief Executive Officer Tengku Muhammad Taufik spoke at the event and highlighted that the partnership with Sarawak Energy further elevates a four-decade long energy partnership with Sarawak that will now include hydrogen as a clean energy carrier.
Tengku Taufik added, “We are indeed privileged to begin a new chapter of our growth journey together with Sarawak that will transform the energy landscape in the state beyond hydrocarbon sources. PETRONAS has observed that hydrogen demand continues to gain pace due to its versatility as a near-zero emission fuel which can be used as industrial feedstock, as an energy carrier, for transportation fuel as well as for power and heat.”
“On the back of our experience in producing blue hydrogen which we currently extract from by-products at our facilities in the country, we are excited to explore further infrastructure development to produce blue and green hydrogen to provide reliable supply of clean energy moving forward.”
With the strategic locations of its facilities across East and West Malaysia, PETRONAS has proximity advantage to key hydrogen demand markets such as Japan and Korea. PETRONAS hydrogen business joins the Liquefied Natural Gas, Gas & Power and New Energy businesses under the company’s Gas and New Energy (GNE) division, which is the Company’s one-stop centre for cleaner energy solutions.
Source: Sarawak Energy