Vietnam greenlights $1.5 bln gas-fired power plants

By Dat Nguyen   October 29, 2019 | 01:03 am PT
Vietnam greenlights $1.5 bln gas-fired power plants
Gas tanks at a gas processing plant in Vietnam. Photo courtesy of PV Gas.
The government has approved two gas-fired power plants in the central province of Quang Ngai at a cost of over VND36 trillion ($1.55 billion).

The Dung Quat 1 and 3 combined cycle gas turbine plants will have a capacity of 750 MW each.

Work on Dung Quat 1 will begin in January 2021 and commercial operations in December 2023. Its cost is estimated at VND18.67 trillion ($804.8 million).

Construction of Dung Quat 3 at an estimated VND17.54 trillion ($756.1 million) will begin in January 2022, and it will go on stream in December 2024.

National power utility Vietnam Electricity, or EVN, will borrow 80 percent of the amount required for the plants.

The plants will use gas from Blue Whale, Vietnam’s largest offshore gas field in the East Sea, known internationally as the South China Sea.

The country’s rapidly growing economy threatens a risk of power shortage. The Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) said in July that a 6.6 billion kWh shortage is likely in 2021, rising to 10 billion kWh in 2022 and 15 billion kWh in 2023.

The World Bank has estimated that Vietnam needs $150 billion to develop its energy sector by 2030, with electricity demand set to grow by 8 percent annually through the next decade.

Gas-fueled power will account for about 14 percent of Vietnam’s total production by 2030. It will use 22 billion cubic meters of LNG per year, half of which will be imported from the U.S., according to the MoIT's Department of Electricity and Renewable Energy.

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