The ceremony for the Nenggiri hydroelectric power plant was held in June 2022. Credit: ANDRITZ GROUP.
The plant is expected to start operating in 2027. Credit: ANDRITZ GROUP.
The Nenggiri hydroelectric power plant is one of the biggest renewable power projects being undertaken in Malaysia. Credit: ANDRITZ GROUP.

The 300MW Nenggiri hydroelectric power plant being developed in Kelantan, Malaysia, is the biggest renewable energy project ever being developed in the country.

Malaysia-based electricity and distribution company TNB Power Generation (TNB Genco), a subsidiary of Tenaga Nasional, is developing the project. It established a special-purpose vehicle named TNBPG Hydro Nenggiri to oversee the plant’s construction and operation.

The ceremony for the construction of the hydropower plant was held in June 2022. The project is expected to generate 600GWh of clean energy a year when it commences operations in 2027.

The hydroelectric power plant will mitigate downstream areas from floods and will also provide a clean and raw water supply for irrigation. It will create 2,000 local job opportunities and help in stabilising the load on the country’s national power grid.

The power project is aligned with the Malaysian government’s goal to increase renewable energy capacity to 31% by 2025 and 40% by 2035.

Location details

Nenggiri hydroelectric power plant is being developed on the Sungai Nenggiri river basin located in Mukim Ulu Nenggiri in the Gua Musang district of Kelantan, a north-eastern state of the Malay Peninsula.

The Sungai Nenggiri River basin has a catchment area of 3,703km² and occupies approximately 30% of the Sungai Kelantan basin.

Nenggiri hydroelectric power plant development details

A feasibility study was carried out with the aim of examining the probability of developing the project in 1968. The feasibility study was re-examined in 2005 and the development design was finalised by TNB in 2016.

TNB Genco was granted the right to develop the project by Malaysia’s Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources (MENR) in June 2021. TNB Genco received a letter of notification from the MENR for developing the power project in November 2021.

Nenggiri hydroelectric power plant composition

The main components of the project include an 88 metre-high roller concrete dam, a 56 metre-high saddle dam, a 29 metre-high re-regulating dam, and a surface power station. The dam will create a storage reservoir of approximately 5,400ha.

A gated spillway comprising five gates and a maximum flood inflow of 20,050m³/s will be installed. The power intake structures will consist of two 150 metre-long penstocks with a diameter of 8.5 metres each and a maximum discharge rate of 620m³/s.

The re-regulating dam will have four radial gates and regulate outflow from the main powerhouse to ensure a constant river outflow of approximately 39m³/s. It will maintain a smooth outflow and address short-term discharge variations in the river.

The power station will feature two vertical Francis turbines with a capacity of 153MW each and two 180MVA synchronous generators.

Grid connection

A 275kV switchyard, located on the left bank abutment of the dam, will connect the power plant to the grid. It will comprise four outgoing transmission lines, a bus coupler bay, two incoming transmission lines from the power station, and two incoming transmission lines from the 33kV gas‐insulated switchgear.

A control building will also be located within the switchyard building to control and protect the power supply equipment.

Power purchase agreement

TNBPG Hydro Nenggiri entered a power purchase agreement with TNB in June 2021 to offtake the power produced from the project for the first 30 years of operations.


TNB Genco is funding the project through an RM2bn sustainability sukuk wakalah Islamic bond, issued in March 2023.

Contractors involved

Construction company Euro Saga signed a letter of intent with Nestcon Infra, a civil engineering and construction company and a subsidiary of Nestcon, to undertake civil and associated works for the project in May 2022.

A consortium led by ANDRITZ, an electromechanical equipment supplier and service provider for hydropower plants, was awarded a contract to supply complete electro and hydromechanical equipment for the project in December 2021.

The contractual scope includes the supply of two Francis turbine generating units and two generators. It also includes the supply of mechanical and electrical balance-of-plant and hydromechanical equipment along with a high-voltage switchyard.

A consortium comprising SMEC, Tokyo Electric Power Service and the SMEC Malaysia Consortium was selected to provide design and construction supervision services for the project in July 2016. SMEC is an infrastructure consulting company and a member of the Surbana Jurong Group of Singapore, and TEPSCO is a Japan-based electric power company.

SMEC contracted specialist economic and strategy consultancy Nova Economics to conduct an independent assessment of the economic viability of the Nenggiri hydroelectric power project.

Consulting business UKM Pakarunding conducted the environmental impact assessment studies for the project.