VN stays committed to developing clean and renewable energy

Việt Nam remains committed and focused on enhancing the development of hydrogen energy production and hydrogen-source fuels in regions with potential and advantages in renewable energy, close to major consumer markets.

This is to establish a comprehensive hydrogen energy industry ecosystem from production to storage, transportation, distribution, and utilisation of hydrogen, according to Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyễn Hồng Diên at a recent government meeting on Việt Nam's hydrogen and off-shore energy development in Hà Nội.

Diên said the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) has started a process to gather feedback and opinions provided by economic experts and continued to study and consolidate reports from competent authorities to establish timely policy mechanisms for addressing current challenges and obstacles.

He said the country's draft Hydrogen Production Strategy by 2030, with a vision towards 2050, aims to strive for hydrogen production capacity from renewable energy, producing green hydrogen and other processes with carbon capture reaching 100,000-500,000 tonnes by 2030 and targeting around 10 - 20 million tonnes by 2050.

Wind turbines at the off-shore Đông Hải Wind Power Plant in southern Trà Vinh Province. — VGP Photo
Wind turbines at the off-shore Đông Hải Wind Power Plant in southern Trà Vinh Province. — VGP Photo

Off-shore

Regarding the development of offshore wind and gas power, according to Power Plan VIII, by 2030, the total additional electricity capacity from gas projects (30,424MW) and offshore wind projects (6,000MW) will constitute about half of the Southeast Asian economy's electricity capacity.

The development of gas and offshore wind power sources will help Việt Nam fulfil its commitment to carbon neutrality by 2050. Gas projects provide a stable foundation for flexible and reliable electricity, supporting wind and solar power projects to ensure a stable power supply.

Hoàng Tiến Dũng, director of the Electricity and Renewable Energy Department under the MoIT, said the practical implementation of gas power projects, including investor selection, feasibility study approval, power purchase agreement negotiations, capital arrangement, and EPC contract execution, requires 7-8 years. For offshore wind projects, the implementation period is around 6-8 years from the survey phase.

"Deploying gas and offshore wind projects to meet the operational deadline before 2030 will likely prove to be a significant challenge," said Dũng.

Phạm Văn Phong, CEO of Vietnam Gas Corporation (PV GAS), said Việt Nam has yet to implement a financial policy, a consumption mechanism for gas power, or a mechanism for converting gas prices to electricity prices. This lack of clarity and direction in the investment projects results in uncertainty about capital recovery and investment arrangement, hindering progress.

"So far, the country has only completed an LNG storage and port complex at the Thị Vải area in the southern Bà Rịa-Vũng Tàu Province, ready to supply regenerated LNG to consumers in the Southeast region. Other port facilities, including some planned in LNG power projects, are facing many difficulties and challenges, including technical and regulatory issues," Phong said.

Infrastructure

Industry experts and insiders have long voiced their concerns over the country's current LNG import infrastructure, which has been considered largely insufficient to meet the goals set in Power Plan VIII. Furthermore, the lack of consideration for connecting LNG import infrastructure with power plants will not optimise resources, reducing investment efficiency and wasting Việt Nam's maritime resources.

"Except for hydrogen, the current sectors related to the implementation of Power Plan VIII under PVN's responsibility are being implemented. However, due to the lack of mechanisms and policies for gas and offshore wind power, there are high risks for investors," said Lê Mạnh Hùng, chairman of the Vietnam Oil and Gas Group (PVN).

He said, for domestic gas-fired power using natural gas, the state benefits significantly, with nearly 50 per cent of the revenue from 1kWh going towards various taxes and fees. However, incomplete mechanisms increase risks during the implementation process.

"As for offshore wind power, due to similarities with offshore oil and gas activities globally, such as seabed surveys and investigations, PVN is fully capable. However, the current issue is the lack of mechanisms, policies, planning, and a responsible agency to approve decisions," he said.

Pham Đức Hiếu, permanent member of the Economic Committee of the National Assembly, advised the Government to form a group of experts from relevant ministries to review cross-sectoral policies along with independent experts to propose amendments to harmonise legal documents. The Economic Committee's standpoint is not to create standalone legal documents.

Nguyễn Quốc Thập, chairman of the Vietnam Petroleum Association (VPA), said there is a need to allow ministries, sectors, and businesses to implement projects simultaneously with the process of refining legal frameworks.

He suggested that, given the current circumstances, major amendments are required, from investment law to electricity law, price law, and bidding law. Waiting for these laws to be amended will take a long time. Therefore, MoIT, as the leading advisory agency for the Government, needs to propose to the National Assembly a comprehensive resolution on equal rights to deploy all sources of electricity, such as offshore wind power, gas power, and LNG power.

Source: VNS

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