Vietnam approves $135bn power plan for 2030


Vietnam’s Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh has approved the Power Development Plan 8 (PDP8), which is part of the National Electricity Development Plan 2021-30, after two years of wrangling and revision.

The $135bn investment package, which aims to strengthen the country’s energy security and increase the share of renewable energy in energy mix, will favor renewables and gas power rather than coal.

Last December, G7 and other wealthier countries pledged $15.5 billion in initial funds to help Vietnam’s transition away from coal. The government estimates it needs up to $658 billion, of which one-fifth would have to be disbursed this decade, to complete its planned transition to carbon neutrality with total phase-out of coal by 2050.

The power plans would boost Vietnam’s power generation capacity by more than two times to over 150 GW by 2030 from 69 GW at the end of 2020.

The Ministry of Industry and Trade said that by 2030, half of office buildings and homes in Vietnam will be powered by rooftop solar panels. Vietnam will also aim to generate green energy for exports, with a target of 5-10 GW by 2030.

According to the PDP8 projection that Vietnam will reach an average GDP growth rate of around 7% by 2050, commercial electricity consumption in Vietnam is estimated to reach about 335 billion kWh by 2025 and about 500 billion kWh by 2030.

Power plants that use domestic and imported liquefied natural gas (LNG) are set to become an important source of power in Vietnam by 2030, with a combined installed capacity of 37.33 GW, or 24.8% of the total, according to a government document seen by Reuters.

Wind, solar, and other renewable sources, excluding hydropower, are set to satisfy at least 31% of Vietnam's energy demand by 2030, from about 25% in 2020. The share of renewables could increase to 47% if G7 pledges are fully implemented, the document said.

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