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Vietnam Infrastructure Spotlight - March 2022

Freshfields' Vietnam Infrastructure Spotlight keeps you up-to-date with the key business and legal developments in this sector. Please contact us if you would also like to receive our Vietnam M&A Spotlight, Vietnam Environment Spotlight or Vietnam Competition Law Spotlight.


Instructions on the draft power plan VIII

Vietnam Deputy Prime Minister Le Van Thanh had instructions to the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) in recent Notice 55 dated 26 February 2022 with respect to Vietnam’s latest draft PDP8. The Deputy PM agreed with the MoIT that:

  • total source capacity is to be about 146,000MW by 2030, and about 352,000MW by 2045;
  • the proposal of the Vietnam Electricity Group (EVN) on switching energy for the Quang Trach 2 Thermal Power Plant to using imported LNG gas because it had invested in the infrastructure of Quang Trach Power Center for both Quang Trach 1 and Quang Trach 2 projects;
  • the solar power capacity plan for 2031-2045 of about 25 per cent of the total power capacity structure was too high and needed to be cut;
  • the capacity for offshore wind needed to be increased.

He requests the ministry to create a plan with stronger measures to implement the commitments of the country at the COP26 Conference:

  • the MoIT to consider the conversion of coal-fired power projects of Nam Dinh 1, Quang Tri 1, Vinh Tan 3, Song Hau 2 to gas or renewable energy, there should be the feasibility of negotiating terminating commitments with foreign investors;
  • the MoIT to consider the development of nuclear power suitable for reducing thermal power and gas power, and what were the procedures for reporting to authorities, and whether it had an environmental impact report for that type of energy compared to thermoelectricity and electrification.

The Deputy PM also suggested removing the solar power plants included in the revised Power Plan VII, estimated at 6,500 MW, and not yet implemented. At the same time, the Deputy PM requested the Power Plan VIII to include the total rooftop solar power capacity of about 7,765 MW installed by people and businesses, according to the general guidance of the MoIT and signed power purchase contracts by the power companies under EVN. Source: Vietnam Plus



  • Clinging to coal. Despite the increasing pressure on the environment, Japan’s Shikoku Electric Power Co Inc. has paid more than 10 billion yen (US$87 million) to Japanese trading house Mitsubishi Corp. to buy a 15 per cent stake in the Vung Ang 2 coal-fired power plant project in Vietnam. After the deal, Mitsubishi holds a 25 per cent stake in the project while another Japanese utility Chugoku Electric Power Co Inc. owns a 20 per cent stake. Source: Vn Express
  • End of the Beginning. Vietnamese energy giants Vietnam Oil and Gas Group (PVN) and EVN are awaiting the nod to take over the first two BOT power plants – Phu My 2.2 and Phu My 3 – put into operation by foreign investors in 2003-4. These two large gas-fired power projects were implemented in Ba Ria-Vung Tau province. Source: Vietnam Net


  • Poor timing. Russian LNG exporter Novatek has signed a cooperation agreement with PetroVietnam Power (PV Power) on the development of potential LNG and energy projects in Vietnam. PV Power has taken a lead in potential LNG projects, and Novatek has established a representative office in Hanoi last August to liaise on the supply LNG to the Vietnamese market. Source: Vietnam Plus
  • Work in progress - 1. B.Grimm Power and Siemens Energy have joined Energy Capital Vietnam (ECV) to develop an LNG-to-power project which is planning a multi-phase gas-fired power complex and floating storage regasification unit terminal in Binh Thuan province. B. Grimm recently signed a joint development agreement with ECV and committed to investing US$200 million in equity in the project. Source: Offshore Energy
  • Work in progress - 2. Japan’s JERA, a 50-50 joint venture between Tokyo Electric Power Company and Chubu Electric Power, will participate in one of Southeast Asia’s largest natural gas-fired power plant and LNG offloading facilities in Vietnam. The project is being pursued with U.S. energy major ExxonMobil with the investment ratio and other details being worked out. While the access to the fuel is becoming increasingly uncertain due to Russia’s invasion into Ukraine and other factors, the partners aim to ensure a stable supply by having a hub in Asia. Source: Nikkei Asia

Renewable Energy

  • Sun exposure. Non-oil energy conglomerate Banpu Plc is buying two more new solar power facilities – the 15MW Chu Ngoc solar farm and the 35MW Nhon Hai solar farm, worth US$26.7 million. Under the 20-year power purchase made with EVN, electricity from the two solar farms is sold at a feed-in tariff rate of 9.35 cents/kWh. Source: Bangkok Post
  • Fresh air. HSBC Vietnam has signed a Letter of Intent (LoI) for evaluating and providing financing solutions with a focus on sustainability with the Trung Nam Construction Investment Corporation, a renewable energy developer in Vietnam. The LoI marks a further step by the bank in the execution of its commitment to arrange up to US$12 billion of direct and indirect sustainable financing for Vietnam by 2030. Source: Vietnam Plus
  • Brake pedal. The Government Inspectorate will conduct a comprehensive examination of renewable power plants. According to a decision from the government’s Deputy Inspector General, any projects under the PDP built between 2011 and 2021 will need to be looked at. The inspection will take 85 days, focusing on the planning, management, and implementation of the schemes. Source: Vietnam Investment Review

Oil & Gas

  • Working together. Vietnam’s largest refining and petrochemical firm, Binh Son Refining and Petrochemical JSC (BSR) will cooperate with Indian Oil to develop petrochemical refinery projects in Vietnam, India and third countries. An MOU was just signed by the two parties in India, and they will join hands in upgrading and expanding Dung Quat oil refinery. Source: Vietnam Plus


  • At least it’s not called Icarus. The Ministry of Transport granted a license to Sun Air, which is owned by Sun Group, a Vietnamese real estate and entertainment firm. Sun Air’s goal is to provide private jet management and air charter services, and sightseeing flights using helicopters and seaplanes. Sun Air targets high-class customers requiring high standard services. Source: Vietnam Plus


  • Easy riders. The Cat Linh- Ha Dong metro line, the first of its kind in Vietnam, was officially put into commercial operation on 6 November 2021 after 10 years of construction and eight years of delays. After all passengers were offered free travel tickets during the first 15 days of operation, the number of passengers has dropped and there was little crowding. Source: Vn Express


  • Super port. The International Finance Corporation (IFC) has announced that it would partner with Singapore’s YCH Group and Vietnam’s T&T Group to develop an international logistics “super port” in Vietnam. Located roughly 60 kms outside Hanoi in the northern province of Vinh Phuc, the Vinh Phuc Inland Container Depot (ICD) Logistics Centre project will be developed by T&Y Superport Vinh Phuc JSC, a joint venture between YCH Group and T&T Group (sponsors). The project is set to be one of the country’s first ICDs with multi-modal facilities, including an international distribution centre and an inland port for rail connectivity and air transportation. Source: Hanoi Times