Renewables to supply 5% of Vietnam’s energy by 2020

 "The percentage of electricity generated from renewable energy sources like wind power will depend on the funds made available from the State budget for this sector," said Le Tuan Phong, deputy director of the Ministry of Industrial and Trade’s Energy Department.

Phong, who heads the ministry’s renewable energy committee, said the sector would focus on developing small-scale hydropower plants, wind energy and solar power, as well as biogas projects.

The ministry had submitted to the Government a master plan for the development of renewable energy, including strategies, incentive policies and regulations to encourage the development of this sector, he said.

Vu Dinh Tuan, CEO of the German-Vietnamese Fuhrlaender Viet Nam Wind Power Joint Stock Company, said the incentive policies for businesses investing in clean energy were not focused or detailed enough, and had been applied differently in various localities. He said there was high potential for developing wind energy in Vietnam, "but this sector requires much more capital."

The American True Wind Solution Organization has said that Vietnam has the highest potential for generating wind energy among Laos, Cambodia and Thailand.

Tuan said the Government should create favourable conditions for the renewable energy to develop, including rapid approval of land grants, pricing policies for alternate energy and permission for different sectors to get involved.

While there are several wind farms in the pipeline in the provinces of Binh Dinh, Lam Dong, Ninh Thuan and Binh Thuan, only the last wind farm has come up with detailed development plans.

Only one wind farm, in the south-central province of Binh Thuan, is currently functioning in Vietnam. Renewable Energy Vietnam JSC operates five wind turbines with a capacity of 7.5 megawatts and is scheduled to expand to 18 wind turbines and 18 megawatts by the end of the year.

Vietnam’s 3,000 kilometres of coastline afford substantial wind power potential, and 8.6 per cent of the country enjoys high-velocity winds.

The Fuhrländer Viet Nam Company is planning to build a US$25 million factory for installing wind turbines, which has already been approved by Binh Thuan authorities.