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Key Findings

KEPCO, South Korea’s national power company, has been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, a problem compounded by the utility’s troubled overseas investments and a lack of strategic awareness.

KEPCO’s clean energy transition will require real leadership from policymakers, top management, and the company’s board.

Executive Summary

Global investors have an important part to play in setting the right market expectations as KEPCO repositions. Over the past year, global investors have watched KEPCO’s top management and its board struggle to reconcile trade-offs between the urgent need to transition away from high-cost and high-carbon generating technologies and to find viable strategies to fund that transition.

Now that Korea has successfully managed the first phase of the COVID19 crisis, investors will be looking for signs that KEPCO can chart a steady transition course and build momentum to meet significant debt repayments due in 2021 and 2022. That means it’s time for KEPCO’s directors to demonstrate what they have learned about the future of the power sector. As KEPCO retunes its strategy, the market will be looking carefully at how the company makes decisions about disruptive new technology, investment and capital expenditure.

Melissa Brown

Former Director, Energy Finance Studies, Asia, Melissa Brown, a former securities analyst at JP Morgan and Citigroup, has played a leading role in various Asian investment organizations focused on mainstream and sustainable investment strategies for public and private equity investors over the past 25 years.

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