COVID: Now is the time to upskill and innovate

In this article series we ask leading energy management experts about the impact of coronavirus. 

Than Oo, Myanmar
National Project Manager for Industrial Energy Efficiency, UNIDO

Currently the COVID economic crisis in Myanmar is very serious, especially for our manufacturing and production industries as they are very labour intensive. Since the COVID crisis occurred, transportation has completely stopped and raw material from abroad has become almost impossible to access.

Innovation is now critical because the world is changing so fast. Doing business in the future will be very different to the way things were before COVID. Business owners will be forced to think outside of the box because industries will become a lot more competitive. In my view they will need to consider and recognize the benefits of resource efficiencies and automation. Business owners need to be prepared to change the way they manage their people and especially their energy resources. Now is the time to improve skills in energy management standards.

In the grip of this crisis, Myanmar companies need to open their eyes and look for available technical skills and assistance, especially from development partners like UNIDO who are supporting Industries. Joining forces with such partners is a great way for companies to gain the technical skills and knowledge needed to innovate.

One way we have helped companies in the past is by improving the efficiency of their compressed air systems. Most people are not aware of what is happening in their compressed air system and whether there is a significant leakage. In a typical industrial plant a compressed air system can consume up to 10 per cent of the total plant’s energy use. With the right support, and innovative mindset, a company such can achieve significant energy and cost savings in their compressed air systems.

Major exporting industries in Myanmar such as garment manufacturing and agriculture have been extremely hard hit by the global pandemic and subsequent economic shutdown. UNIDO is continuing its work with the country’s primary industries in a bid to reduce costs through better energy management. Learn more about how the Accelerator is contributing to Myanmar’s growth ambitions by providing cost effective energy solutions to secure jobs and reduce poverty.

Innovation in a time of COVID. The COVID-19 pandemic will change the global industrial sector forever. In this article series we ask leading energy management experts about how the virus has affected their country’s industrial sectors and what businesses could be doing to prepare for an uncertain future.