9 January, 2021

Current status of renewable energy development in Vietnam

Renewable energy development has been achieving encouraging results. However, to maximize potential, there will be a lot of work to do in Power Plan VIII, as well as in a separate law in this area (if enacted).

Polluting thermal power, critical hydropower, and nuclear power are facing disaster warnings, leading to an inevitable need to research, supplement and gradually replace thermal and hydroelectric power sources with renewable energy. generated from wind, solar, biomass … The practice of developing energy in developed countries also shows that this is the inevitable path. Many countries have paid special attention to this field early, such as in Sweden, Denmark, Austria, France, in 2014 the renewable energy (RE) used accounted for about 13.4% of the total energy. consume.

Vietnam is one of the countries with great potential for developing renewable energy such as hydroelectricity, wind energy, solar energy, biomass energy, geothermal energy … Specifically, our country is in monsoon subtropical area, with coastline more than 3000km long.

Vietnam is also considered a country with great potential for solar energy, especially in the central and southern regions of the country with the total number of sunny hours in the year ranging from 1,400-3,000 hours. average solar radiation is about 4-5 kWh / m2 / day. Solar energy in Vietnam is available all year round, is quite stable and widely distributed in different regions of the country. In particular, the average number of sunny days in the central and southern provinces is about 300 days / year.

However, the reality shows that the exploitation and use of renewable energy is still limited. The development of renewable energy has only been rampant in the past 2 years when the Prime Minister’s decisions on the FIT price support mechanism (a policy mechanism is introduced to encourage the development of RE resources, prices Electricity sale is calculated so that the investor can fully pay the investment cost, have moderate interest and this price is fixed for 20 years).

Power Planning VII adjusts to give priority to developing renewable energy sources for electricity production; Increase the rate of electricity produced from renewable energy sources (excluding large and medium hydroelectricity, storage hydropower) to about 7% by 2020 and over 10% by 2030.

Recently issued Government Resolution 140 on the Government’s action program to implement Resolution 55 of the Politburo sets the more ambitious goal that the proportion of renewable energy sources in the total primary energy supply is about 15-20% by 2030; 25-30% by 2045.

Exploding renewable energy from mechanisms and policies

One of the remarkable information recently provided by Vietnam Electricity (EVN) is that 113 solar and wind power projects with a total capacity of over 5,700MW have basically been fully released. (including projects operating before June 30, 2019 and new projects that will be operational in 2020). This is a record number of new plants energizing in a short period of time.

As of the end of August 2020, the total capacity of wind and solar power sources approved for additional planning is nearly 23,000MW, of which solar power is about 11,200 MW; Wind power is about 11,800MW. Up to now, the country has put into operation 102 solar power projects with a total capacity of 6,314MWp (equivalent to 5,245MWac).

Top 10 enterprises leading clean energy voted by experts, scientists, Science Council of Vietnam Energy Magazine in 2019 – the year of renewable energy boom, respectively: Construction Investment Joint Stock Company building Trung Nam (Trungnam Group); Dau Tieng Energy Joint Stock Company; Truong Thanh Group Vietnam Joint Stock Company (TTVN Group); TTC Group; Bim Group Group; Trading and Construction Joint Stock Corporation (Vietracimex); Vietnam Electricity (EVN); Sunseap Group (Thailand); Cong Ly Tourism Trade Construction Company Limited; Sao Mai Group.

The total power capacity of the Top 10 clean energy enterprises with the list of 29 solar and wind power plants is over 2,300 MW. In which, 2,164.52 MW of solar power and 139.15 MW of wind power, accounting for 49% of the total capacity of solar and wind power nationwide and accounting for 27.6% of the total renewable energy (excluding medium and large hydro) .

In which, Trungnam Group ranked first in the ranking in 2019 with 3 renewable energy power projects that were put into operation. In which, in Ninh Thuan province, Trung Nam solar power plant, with a total capacity of 204 MW; Trung Nam wind power plant (phase 1) with a total capacity of 39.95 MW; In Tra Vinh province, Trung Nam Tra Vinh Solar Power Plant with a total capacity of 140 MW.

However, a phenomenon that deserves attention is that some projects out of 113 wind and solar power projects have been partly or wholly transferred by domestic investors to foreign investors from Thailand and the Philippines. , China, Singapore …

The attractiveness of renewable energy projects in Vietnam to foreign investors, according to the Ministry of Industry and Trade, also lies in the price policy of FIT which is quite attractive.

The race of investors and enterprises to make wind power also makes public opinion afraid about the wave that happened to solar power in 2018. Only with Decision No. 11/2017 / QD- Regarding the mechanism to encourage investment in solar power development, within a year and a half, 135 solar power projects with a total capacity of 8,935 MW were added to the electricity development plan.

However, with the fact that investment in solar power projects cooled down when applying new FIT prices (down) and asked to switch to an investor selection auction after 2021, wind power is emerging as A more attractive option, especially when the current FIT price will not expire until November 2021.

According to the calculation of demand by the Ministry of Industry and Trade, by 2025, the wind power source that needs to be supplemented with the high plan is 11,630 MW, accounting for 20% of the total national electricity source. That means, in addition to the 4,800 MW that was added to the planning, about 7,000 MW of new projects will be added.

During the massive development of solar power, there was no transmission grid, making the projects unable to mobilize their planned capacity, making it difficult for investors to balance their finances. Concerned about the similar situation with wind power caused the Ministry of Industry and Trade to continuously propose investment in a series of new transmission lines. However, the construction of the line is not as fast as the project construction, so the risk of having a plant that cannot generate power on the grid still exists in both wind and solar power projects that are being implemented.

One of the remarkable information mentioned by Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Hoang Quoc Vuong at the Vietnam Energy Forum 2020 taking place on June 18, 2020 is that by the end of 2020, the Ministry of Industry and Trade will build a mechanism can organize tenders, select investors to develop solar power.

“With this mechanism in place, potential investors, including investors in the past period, have a lot of experience in developing solar power, and investors do not have to worry about planning anymore”, Deputy Minister Hoang Quoc Vuong said. Specifically, when there is a competition mechanism, transparency will create favorable conditions for investors.

“Therefore, the game in the coming time will focus on qualified investors, this is also a signal for all investors with internal strength to try in the future. RE development will take off, develop faster, more fully and efficiently “- Deputy Minister Hoang Quoc Vuong emphasized.

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