VietNamNews

Wise steps in investing in renewable energy sector in Vietnam

Update: April, 19/2019 - 09:30

In April 2018 Gulf Energy Development Group of Thai energy tycoon Sarath Ratanavadi tied up with TTC Group to develop solar and offshore wind power plants.

The plants include TTC No. 01 and TTC No.02 Solar Power Plant projects in the southern Tay Ninh Province, and a solar power and wind power plant each in Ben Tre Province, with a total installed capacity of 460 megawatts (MW).

Besides, Gulf is also interested in LNG electrification projects worth nearly US$8 billion.

TTC No. 01 and TTC No.02 Solar Power Plants in the southern Tay Ninh Province. — Photo Courtesy of TTC

Gulf Energy Development’s investment in renewable energy in Vietnam is not only a strategic step to expand its operations in Southeast Asia, but also benefits from incentives in the Vietnamese market.

With June 30, the deadline for solar power projects to enjoy a preferential tariff of 9.35 cents / kWh under Decision 11 of the Prime Minister in 2017, approaching, there are concerns about how Gulf will realise its goals.

Two projects, TTCIZ 01 and 02 in Trang Bang District, Tay Ninh Province, have linked up with the national grid. TTCIZ 01with a capacity of 68.8 MWp began commercial operation on March 6, 2019, and TTCIZ 02 with a capacity of 49 MWp was put into operation on April 16, and is awaiting the COD (the Commercial Operation Date) certificate.

These projects that Gulf has tied up with TTC for are among six that the latter and its member connected to the national grid so far.

There are 13 solar power projects in operation in the country now, and all energy companies are scrambling to begin operations by June 30 to enjoy the preferential tariff of 9.35 cents, but it is thought that only a few will.

To finish their projects before the deadline, they need to resolve legal issues related to investment, land clearance and compensation and electricity procedures. Besides, they also need funds to develop their renewable projects, but with banks cautious about lending to this sector, it will be not easy for them to get credit.

TTC No. 01 and TTC No.02 Solar Power Plants have linked up with the national grid. — Photo Courtesy of TTC

Regarding to other projects, Gulf is preparing to develop the Ben Tre Solar Power Project with a capacity of 30 MWp and start construction of the Binh Dai Wind Power Project with a capacity of 30 MW in phase 1 out of a total of 310 MW, which is now completing legal procedures.

The construction will be carried out in phases to increase to 310 MW and then nearly 500 MW before the deadline of November 2021 to get incentives under the Government’s Decision No. 39/2018 to support wind power development.

The Ben Tre Solar Power Project, which has a capacity of 30 MWp and is awaiting completion of legal formalities, will enjoy the incentive rate for Region 3 under the draft decree on the new retail electricity price structure.

All Gulf's plans are currently being implemented with solar power projects of nearly 150 MWp, wind power projects of 500 MW and other M&A projects in the renewable energy sector to meet its target of developing 1,000MW of renewable energy.

In addition, Gulf is developing a gas-fired power complex in the central province of Ninh Thuan.

The complex is designed with four plants with a total capacity of 6,000 MW. Its cost is estimated at $7.8 billion.

With Vietnam's average electricity demand growing at 10 per cent per year, and many foreign corporations entering the energy sector, Gulf, the largest energy company in Thailand, has taken the pioneering step and achieved encouraging results in the renewable energy market in Vietnam.