Sunseap receives approval for US$150 million solar farm, largest in Vietnam
From Left to Right: Frank Phuan (Founder & CEO of Sunseap), Nguyễn Xuân Phúc (PM of Vietnam)
Sunseap International, a unit of Singapore's leading clean energy provider Sunseap Group, announced today that it has received the green light for a US$150 million solar farm in Vietnam, the largest in the country to-date.
The issuance of the Decision on Land Handover (Phase 1) for the 168 MegaWatt-peak (MWp) solar project in the Ninh Thuan province coincided with the Vietnam – Singapore Business Dialogue 2018 held in Singapore with Vietnam's Prime Minister, His Excellency Nguyen Xuan Phuc as Guest of Honour.
This was preceded by the issuance of the Investment Registration Certificate which involves a detailed process involving approvals from various authorities including the Prime Minister Office, which is required for solar projects exceeding 50 MWp.
The project represents the largest solar collaboration between Singapore and Vietnam and is expected to break ground in mid-2018 before going into commercial operation by June 2019. Once completed, it will generate enough electricity to power up to 200,000 households in Vietnam and create permanent jobs for over 200 workers.
Under the investment agreement, Sunseap, together with its joint-venture partners InfraCo Asia – an infrastructure development and investment company of the Private Infrastructure Development Group, and CMX Renewable Energy Canada Inc. – a solar developer based in Canada, will be allowed to sell solar power generated by its solar farm to Vietnam's national grid at the mandated solar feed-in tariff of 9.35 US cents/kilowatt hour for the next 20 years provided they complete the delivery of the clean energy to the grid by June 2019.
Mr Frank Phuan, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Sunseap, said: "This is the largest project to-date for Sunseap and we are honoured to be able to participate in the greening of Vietnam. There is so much potential to bring affordable and reliable clean energy to the country and we are excited to work with a government that is committed to sustainable development as the way forward.
"The Vietnam solar farm project is in line with our vision to conserve the environment, and at the same time contribute to communities across Asia. We hope that our project can serve as a catalyst to promote greater investments in renewables not just in Vietnam but also throughout the Indo-China region."
Mr. Luu Xuan Vinh, Chairman of Ninh Thuan Provincial People's Committee, said: "The 168 MWp solar farm project invested by Sunseap CMX RE Solar Holdings Pte. Ltd. is one of the largest solar energy projects in Ninh Thuan Province. We are pleased to announce that the People's Committee of Ninh Thuan Province has issued the Investment Registration Certification and the Decision on Land Handover (Phase 1), handing over 130 hectares of land to the project developer. The remaining 56 hectares is expected to be handed over in May 2018.
This project is an example of the collaboration between Vietnam and Singapore to attract investments in the renewable energy sector and demonstrates Vietnam government's support for Singapore businesses to invest in Vietnam and Ninh Thuan. We are confident that this project will act as a catalyst for more foreign investments into Vietnam and look forward especially to greater collaboration with Singapore enterprises."
Energy demand in Vietnam is seeing a 12 percent growth annually. According to targets set across by the Vietnamese Government, solar power is expected to become the main source of renewable energy in the future, with installed capacity expected to be increased to 850 MegaWatts (MW) by 2020, which would account for 1.6 percent of the country's power generation and 12,000 MW by 2030.
Enterprise Singapore, the Singaporean government agency championing enterprise development, supported Sunseap in developing its new technologies and helped built its manpower capabilities in its expansion into Southeast Asia. Enterprise Singapore supported Sunseap in connecting the company with industry stakeholders, including local and international financiers.
Mr Tan Soon Kim, Assistant Chief Executive Officer, Enterprise Singapore, said: "We have seen traction in renewable energy projects in Vietnam, particularly in the solar energy sector. We hope to partner more companies to tap these growing opportunities in the market. The recent Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) we have signed with Vietnam Electricity and Renewable Energy Authority aims to bring in more potential downstream opportunities for Singapore companies."