The project is planned to be built on the Baleh River, about 95km from its confluence with the Rajang River in the Kapit Division.

Expected to create about 3,500 jobs, the project is said to be one of the largest infrastructure projects in Sarawak.

Sarawak Energy Group CEO Datuk Torstein Dale Sjotveit said: “We are pleased to announce that we have received official approval of the project from the Cabinet, following on from the approval of the Social and Environmental Impact Assessment report last year.”

Scheduled to be commissioned in 2025, the concrete faced rock-fill dam (CFRD) will be the company’s second project of its kind under the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (Score) initiative with first being the 944MW Murum hydro project.

Score is a new development corridor in central Sarawak which will develop the Sarawak state by 2020 and beyond.

Sjotveit added: “We have made comprehensive updates to the plan to maximize local content,” Torstein elaborated.

“Participation from local contractors will result in management, technology and knowledge transfer from our international contractors to build up the local capacity and capability so they can prepare for future opportunities locally and abroad.”

Sarawak’s energy capacity is estimated to increase from 4,600MW in 2015 to 5300MW by 2020, the company said.