URUMQI, Jan. 18 -- China Huaneng Group, China's biggest power producer, will build two 600MW power units in the far western Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, an executive at its Xinjiang subsidiary said Saturday.
Liu Xinmin, general manager of the Huaneng Xinjiang Energy Development Company, said the regional development and reform commission, the local economic planner, gave the green light to the initial phase of its Turpan power plant Saturday.
The plant will help to meet rising power demand in Turpan and southern Xinjiang and also is a major power source for the country's west-east electricity transmission project, Liu said.
Huaneng planned to start construction this April. The units, which cost about 4.8 billion yuan (703 million U.S. dollars), are expected to be put into operation at the end of 2012, he said.
Huaneng also planned to add another two 600MW power units to the Turpan power plant before 2015 to take advantage of the rich coal resources and the region's position as a power-grid hub, the executive said.
The power grid in Turpan will be connected this year to a national one that helps transmit power from the west to the east.