Southern Region Seen Facing Power Shortfall in 2013-15

HCMC – The country’s southern provinces do not need to worry about power blackouts from now to the year-end, but severe electricity shortages may hit this region in 2013-2015.

Nguyen Thanh Duy, general director of the Southern Power Corporation (EVN SPC), told the media yesterday that the southern power plants could not be switched on as scheduled to meet strong electricity demand in the region. Moreover, the two 500kV north-south power line is currently overloaded.

Vietnam Electricity Group (EVN) is developing the third 500kV line to transmit electricity from the north to the south. However, the project is facing financial distress and site clearance problems, so it cannot be finalized late this year as planned.

“EVN and the Ministry of Industry and Trade are weighing a contingency plan to cope with power shortages in the southern region from the dry season of 2013 onwards. The ministry expects to have the official information by this year’s end,” said Duy.

EVN SPC supplies power for 21 southern cities and provinces, excluding HCMC. In the first half of this year, EVN SPC has provided this region with some 17 billion kWh, up 13.15% year-on-year.

Binh Duong, Can Tho, Tien Giang, Binh Phuoc, Binh Thuan and Ben Tre are the biggest electricity consumers.

Regarding the 110kV undersea cable line running from Ha Tien to Phu Quoc, which will be developed under a deal signed between EVN SPC and Italy’s Prysmian PowerLink SRL, Duy said it would take about one year for the Italian contractor to produce the specialized undersea cable.

The 56-km undersea cable line worth around VND2.3 trillion will get off the gorund in early 2014 and be completed in the middle of that year. Then, Phu Quoc Island will be connected to the national grid via the line.

The Saigon Times

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