GA Powers ahead with 58 MW of solar in Vietnam

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With solar investors frequently citing unfamiliar and problematic local customs and bureaucracy when discussing the difficulties of entering emerging PV markets, the contrasting experience of one German company in Vietnam helped secured a $50 million investment.

German ASEAN Power has committed to developing two 29 MW solar parks in Ha Tinh province – at the communes of Cam Hung and Son Quang – and cited the smooth welcome received by local officials as one of the reasons for settling on the location.

“Ha Tinh provincial government did an excellent job throughout our research and development steps and has been a crucial force behind our successful implementation into the national masterplan for solar,” said Roland Quast, managing director of GA Power, in a press release announcing the plans published yesterday. “We felt truly welcome as an international player here, and it has been all around professional, reliable and speedy – as you would not normally expect, and as we [have] not necessarily experienced in other places we looked at.”

GA Power says it has been exploring the investment potential of seven Vietnamese provinces for hosting utility-scale solar since 2016. The projects have been approved by Vietnam’s Ministry for Industry and Trade for inclusion in the national FIT program.

The company says the two schemes will bring “hundreds of local jobs” during the construction phase and “many permanent opportunities” thereafter, with the plants set to be operational by June 2019.

“Ha Tinh is open to foreign investors, particularly in the high-tech industries that bring our country forward,” said Dang Quoc Khanh, chairman of the people’s committee of Ha Tinh. “We have set a focus on providing international investors with an environment that they feel [is] comfortable and trustworthy for their business activities.”