Vietnam cuts power consumption at its largest solar farm

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HANOI, Sept 13 (Reuters) – Vietnam has cut the utilization rate of electricity generated at its largest solar farm by 40 percent due to the lack of a pricing mechanism in place, officials said on Tuesday. authorities. the country’s desire to increase the use of renewable energies.

The electricity trading unit of the utility EVN has reduced the utilization rate from 450 MW to 278 megawatts (MW) at the Trung Nam – Thuan Nam solar power plant in Ninh Thuan province, the government said in A press release.

Vietnam, which pledged last year to become carbon neutral by 2050, is seeking to increase its installed power generation capacity with a focus on renewable energy.

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The EVN unit said the reduction in usage from September 1 was due to “lack of a pricing mechanism”, according to a letter reviewed by Reuters that was sent to power plant developer Trung Nam Group.

“We cannot use the part of the installed capacity for which a feed-in tariff has not been approved by the authorities,” EVN deputy general manager Nguyen Anh Tai said in the government press release. .

The existing pricing mechanism, at 9.35 US cents per kWh, is only applicable for the first 2,000 MW of solar capacity in the province.

Trung Nam, in a separate letter, had asked the Ministry of Industry and Commerce and EVN to resume full use of the solar park.

Resuming full use would help the investor cover their investment cost and “avoid bankruptcy”, according to the letter reviewed by Reuters.

Vietnam’s renewable energy developers frequently face concerns about local regulations and their relationship with EVN, said Hanoi-based energy analyst Nguyen Thanh Son.

“The government needs to separate the power transmission operations from EVN and commercialize the power sector quickly.”

US climate envoy John Kerry said last week in Hanoi that the utilization rate of installed renewable energy sources in Vietnam was too low. Read more

In March, EVN urged people to save energy, warning of power shortages due to limited coal supplies. Read more

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Reporting by Khanh Vu Editing by Ed Davies

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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