HÀ NỘI — Việt Nam may not be meeting its development potential to exploit wind power to provide energy to the country.
A report has been released by the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) outlining the current power produced nationwide through wind farms.
It says the country is falling short, and could generate much more power to help fuel the nation in a safer, more environmentally friendly manner.
The report revealed that as of March this year, an additional 78 wind power projects capable of producing 4,880 megawatts have been added to the Power Development Plan.
Eleven are currently operational and a further 31 are waiting to be finished and should be up and running either this year or next.
The report also stated another 250 wind power projects are currently at the proposal stage.
But despite these projects having a capability of generating 45,000MW each year, they are not proving attractive for potential investors.
Chairman of the Bình Thuận Wind Power Association Bùi Văn Thịnh told Vietnam News Agency that even though these projects could help power the country, completing them is not so simple – especially off-shore farms.
He said: “Handing over the surface of the sea to the investors faces many procedures as it relates to not only the normal land lease but also the national defence and security.
“There is a lack of policies to develop offshore wind power.”
Investors are concerned some of the projects may not meet the 18 month deadline set by the Government in order to attract a decent price per kWh.
If that deadline is met, and wind farms are up and running in time, they could charge as much as VNĐ1,770 (7.8 US cents) per kWh over the next 20 years.
Thịnh believes this is not enough time to get approval, build and begin producing energy in time for investors to take bait.
He hopes the Government will consider extending the deadline and support businesses willing to take a chance with future investments.
Thịnh says because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the timeframe must be reconsidered, as many investment firms are reconsidering their positions due to the virus.
Agreeing with Thịnh, Lê Anh Tùng of Ecotech Company, said: “Wind power firms facing with difficulties to meet the deadline because foreign manufacturers stopped production and delayed delivery of equipment.
“An extension of the deadline is necessary for businesses.”
Wind farm development is important not just for environmental reasons, but also because draughts nationwide have reduced reservoir capacities, putting strain on hydropower plants.
The MoIT is concerned that there will be a shortage of electricity in the next five years, particularly in the south of the country, even if oil-powered sources run at maximum capacity.
It has also backed calls to extend the deadline for completion of projects to 2023. — VNS