Viet Nam faces severe power shortage for next few years


Technicians inspecting a transformer. Electricity of Viet Nam (EVN) is predicting a 1,400MW shortfall of electricity for the next few years. — VNA/VNS Photo Ngoc Ha

HCM CITY — Viet Nam imported about 2.2 billions kWh of electricity from China in the first seven months of this year, 13.2 per cent more than in the same period last year, according to Electricity of Viet Nam (EVN).

EVN said the country is facing a severe power shortage of about 1,400MW or 10 per cent of total capacity at rush hours.

Its experts have also forecast the shortage will persist over the next few years. Breakdowns at electrical plants nation-wide, as well as the delayed operation of new plants have been blamed for the shortage.

In an effort to increase supply sources, EVN has increased purchases from China and local power stations outside its grid. EVN bought 15.6 billion kWh in 2009 from local power stations, 22.79 per cent more than in the same period earlier. The output of conventional commercial power went up to around 41,1 billion kWh in the first seven months, an increase of more than 8.83 per cent.

Since it is the rainy season, hydropower stations are running at maximum capacities. EVN has asked the Hoa Binh Hydropower Plant to keep up water in its reservoir at the highest level and prepare to hoard water for the next dry season. Thermal and gas power stations are also running at maximum capacity.

EVN has said that power purchases from China will be based on actual needs.

Contractors have been asked to urgently expedite projects, complete pilot works and make them operational at the earliest. Eleven power stations are set to be linked to the national grid this month and three other projects are set to be launched.

The national daily output of electricity is expected to average 250 million kWh this month and the biggest output is estimated at 13,800 – 14,100kWh, according to EVN. — VNS


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