Superblock, Thailand’s largest solar energy company, has announced plans to invest $650 million USD in three “near-shore wind farms” in southern Vietnam. The farms will be in Bac Lieu Province with 142 MW of capacity; Ca Mau Province with 100 MW of capacity and Soc Trang Province with 98 MW of capacity. Construction on the first phase wind farms has begun and they are expected to be operational in 2020.
The second phase of Superblocks investment will include an additional 360 MW of capacity that will also be built in the Bac Lieu, Ca Mau and Soc Trang provinces and construction will begin on the second phase wind farms once the first phase farms are operational.
Superblock believes that Vietnam will be an important market for its energy creation and management activities because of Vietnam’s growing economy and young population, which are increasing the countries energy consumption by 10% annually.
An important consideration in investing in Vietnam is the belief that Vietnam wants to meet its increased energy needs by welcoming renewable energy activities. A representative of Superblock noted that both Thailand and Vietnam want to implement renewable energy solutions that contribute to a cleaner environment with less air pollution.
Jormsup Lochaya, the CEO of Superblock said in an interview with Reuters that: “Ho Chi Minh and Hanoi have similar problems and the Vietnamese want clean and cheap energy - this is driving renewable energy growth,” He also noted that the Vietnamese government policy on renewables is clear so its easy to create investment strategies.
According to data, Vietnam currently has wind power capacity of 140 MW, with a goal to reach 6,000 MW by 2030.
Jormsup said that financing for the Vietnam projects will come from Superblocks turnkey partner, a state-owned Chinese construction company, and the sites will be built on land leased for 49 years. In addition to the wind-farms, Superblock is considering an investment in a 50 MW solar farm in Vietnam and will make a decision later this year.
Expressing a desire to be a regional player, Superblock plans to expand wind and solar capacity, in Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar and the Philippines as well as Vietnam. The company said that it is targeting revenue growth of 25% per year and to have overseas revenue contributions climb to 30% annually. As well as Southeast Asia the company has said it will look at projects in Australia, China and Japan.