Industrial parks seek answers for potential power shortages

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Many industrial areas face the risk of power shortages in 2024, which will undermine production, tenants, and investment.

Industrial parks seek answers for potential power shortages, illustration photo

Quang Ninh provincial authorities have urgently requested the Ministry of Industry and Trade and Vietnam Electricity (EVN) to address the electricity shortfall in its industrial parks (IPs).

“The province has 520 hectares of IPs with all the necessary infrastructure except for electricity. There is land and infrastructure but not enough power for production activities,” said Vice Chairman of Quang Ninh People’s Committee Bui Van Khang at the ministry’s annual work summary meeting.

For example, Nam Tien Phong and Bac Tien Phong IPs receive only 50MW of electricity daily, far below the requirement of hundreds of MW for daily operations. In addition, the Texhong-Hai Ha IP’s electrical substation is operating at full capacity and needs upgrading.

“Increasing power supply for IPs is an urgent task. Thus, I propose the ministry and EVN pay attention to this problem,” he said.

It is not the first time that the province has expressed concern about the power shortage. At Song Khoai IP, Amata City Halong took the Amata 1 substation into operation and had plans to install transformers at the end of 2023. However, the installation has yet to be completed because the current 250MVA substation of Song Khoai IP is full, and cannot connect with the other transformers in the IP.

At Viet Hung IP, the investor built an additional 110/22kV transformer. However, Northern Power Corporation has yet to build a 110kV power line to supply power. The decision approving the construction was issued in April 2022.

In addition, in the southern province of Dong Nai, the demand for power is still rising as new IPs and other infrastructures are preparing to take into operation. Meanwhile, almost all electrical loads are either full or overloaded.

Dong Nai ranks third in the country in terms of electricity consumption, following Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi.

Deputy head of EVN’s Planning Division Nguyen Anh Tu said, “In recent years, industrial production in the province faced difficulties, and the electricity load has decreased. However, the economy will soon grow again, and new IPs will be established, causing pressure on the electricity supply.”

There are worries over power shortages after a series of power cuts without specific schedules or durations last summer, particularly in the north of the country. At the time, many enterprises said that the unannounced power interruptions had forced firms to suspend operations and miss deadlines for orders, while impacting the working time of their employees.

“South Korean enterprises reported suffering dual damage. When having power interruptions without prior notice, workers still go to the factories and sit idle. Meanwhile, the manufacturing lines have to suspend operations and the companies still must pay salaries,” said Hong Sun, chairman of the Korean Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam.

EVN’s Anh Tu added, “At present, the transformer stations and power grid are operating in an overloaded state. The implementation of additional power stations and synchronous grid projects faces a delay due to barriers in land clearance. If this situation is not resolved soon, the power supply to Dong Nai will be impacted.”

EVN chairman Dang Hoang An stressed the need for collaboration between local authorities and investors to expedite these projects.

“Provinces with the need to upgrade substations for IPs should promptly notify the energy industry so it can make timely preparations and investments, as electrical infrastructure projects take a long time to deploy,” An said.

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