Mainstream and Vietnam sign agreement for capacity building event
Mainstream and Vietnam's Department of Foreign Affairs for Provinces are to stage a capacity building event to increase regional government engagement in the development of offshore wind.
A Memorandum of Understanding to collaborate on the event – the second to be held by Mainstream in the country – was signed as part of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs / Vietnam Economic Times 'Connections for Development Forum 2021' in Hanoi.
Tran Thanh Huan, Director General of the DFAP, and Bui Vinh Thang, Head of Government & Corporate Relations at Mainstream Vietnam, sealed the agreement at a ceremony witnessed by Foreign Affairs Deputy Minister To Anh Dung and Alan McGreevey, of the Irish Embassy.
Thang explained that the first capacity building event – held in 2019 and attended by more than 50 leaders from 24 provincial governments – had successfully laid the ground work for partnerships with the renewable energy sector.
The focus of the new event, which is expected to be run in the second half of 2021, Covid restrictions allowing, will be to share industry development knowledge that can unlock the country’s "huge offshore wind potential".
He said: "According to the World Bank, Vietnam has the capacity to generate up to 475 GW of energy from wind within 200km from shore, and Mainstream is already developing two projects – the 1,400 MW Phu Cuong Soc Trang and 500 MW Ben Tre projects – as part of our wind and solar portfolio here.
"In fact, the first 200MW phase of Phu Cuong Soc Trang is ready to start construction this year, pending permits from the government.
"Mainstream has been in Vietnam since 2016, and this continuing partnership shows how we are willing to support and work with government in building up the offshore industry. We believe that Vietnam can build up to 10 GW of offshore wind by 2030."
The latest collaboration comes after the Ministry of Industry and Trade proposed tripling wind power capacity to 18-19 GW by the end of the decade – accounting for 13% of Vietnam’s installed capacity – in its draft Power Development Plan 8, published in February.
Mainstream has since led calls for the promotion of offshore development, making representations as part of the Global Wind Energy Council to senior officials at the Ministry for Planning and Development, the influential Economic Commission and on the Foreign Affairs Committee.
Thang added: "We are delighted to see an offshore target of 5 GW until 2030 in the recent draft PDP8 by MOIT. It shows that the government has seen the potential of the industry of Vietnam and wants to develop it."