Should Vietnam buy electricity from China?

Created 09 August 2018
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Experts believe that buying electricity from other countries, especially China, will not reduce domestic electricity shortage, but could increase the price of electricity and pose risks for national defence.

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vietnam economy, business news, vn news, vietnamnet bridge, english news, Vietnam news, news Vietnam, vietnamnet news, vn news, Vietnam net news, Vietnam latest news, Vietnam breaking news, EVN, Tran Viet Ngai, retail electricity price

MOIT wants to buy electricity from China

The Ministry of Industry and Trade (MOIT), reporting about projects in the seventh national power development program, mentioned a plan to increase electricity imports as a solution to the domestic power shortage.

The ministry warned that the southern region may incur an electricity shortage by 2025 if large-scale projects cannot be implemented. These include the 500 KV Vung Ang – Doc Soi – Pleiku 2 that transmits power from the north to the south.

It is estimated that the total capacity of all electricity sources throughout the country to be put into operation in 2018-2020 is 8,900 MW, or just equal to 60 percent of planned volume. 

The 750 MW O Mon III project and the expanded 360 MW Yaly hydropower project may not be completed on schedule, while many other projects with the total capacity of 5,200 MW will be delayed until after 2020. If Thai Binh 2 thermopower project foes not open by 2020 as planned, the figure would be 6,400 MW.

The 750 MW O Mon III project and the expanded 360 MW Yaly hydropower project may not be completed on schedule, while many other projects with the total capacity of 5,200 MW will be delayed until after 2020. If Thai Binh 2 thermopower project foes not open by 2020 as planned, the figure would be 6,400 MW.

As for wind power development, the projects submitted to MOIT for approval have total capacity of 1,596 MW, a small figure compared with the targeted 5,000 MW by 2020.

This means the risk of electricity outage exists in 2020-2030.

Regarding plans to import electricity, MOIT said from now to 2020, Vietnam would import power from southern Laos through the 220 KV transmission line with the highest possible capacity of 1,000 MW. In 2026-2030, Vietnam would buy electricity from northern Laos with capacity of 2,000 MW.

MOIT also plans to increase the electricity import capacity from China to 1,000 MW from 2019, while the electricity output to purchase would increase by 3.5 billion kwh a year.

According to Tran Viet Ngai, chair of the Vietnam Energy Association, Vietnam previously bought power from China at the capacity of 300 MW. 

Even if the figure is lifted to 1,000 MW, this would not have much significance in the context of Vietnam’s demand for electricity growing by 10 percent. In other words, Ngai thinks buying more electricity from China will not help.

Other experts noted that the electricity shortage is mostly in the southern region, so if it buys electricity from China, the Electricity of Vietnam (EVN) will have to think of solutions to transmit electricity to the south through the 500 KV transmission line. 

 

Source: Chi Mai - Bridge

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