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EVN to borrow $278 million to expand Hoa Binh, Vietnam

Vietnam’s state-run power utility Electricity of Vietnam (EVN) will borrow up to VND 6.45 trillion (US$ 278 million) to expand the country’s second largest hydroelectric plant, the Government announced on 25 September.

The expansion of the Hoa Binh storage plant on the river Song Da in the northern province of Hoa Binh is scheduled to begin in the fourth quarter of 2020 and be completed by 2023, the Vietnamese Government said in a statement on its website.

The expansion project, which will result in an increase in its installed capacity by 480 MW to 2400 MW and its average annual output by about 488 GWh to more than 8600 GWh, will cost an estimated VND 9.22 trillion (US$ 397.2 million), of which 30 per cent will be financed by EVN, and 70 per cent from commercial loans. In July, Vietnam’s Ministry of Industry and Trade said the country faced the prospect of severe power shortages from 2021 as electricity demand outpaces the construction of new power generation.

The project aims to increase the national grid’s peaking power and maximize utilization of water discharged from the plant in the flood season for generating power. In addition, it will help improve frequency modulation capability and stabilize the frequency of the national electricity system and reduce the working intensity of the plant’s turbines, thus prolonging the life of the generating equipment and saving maintenance and repair costs, according to EVN. The plant, which was commissioned in 1994, comprises a 128 m-high, 970 m-long rockfill dam, which impounds a reservoir with a total storage capacity of 1.6 x 109 m3 and a surface area of 208 km2. Its power station currently comprises eight 240 MW units, which generate annual output of 8160 GWh.