The delegation of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action (BMWK) led by Ms. Nicole Glanemann – Deputy Head of Division for Bilateral Energy Cooperation paid a visit to Vietnam on February 20 – 21, 2023. The working visit aims at supporting the Vietnamese government to strengthen the political and specific regulatory implementation process for the energy transition in Vietnam throughout exchanging and sharing international experiences.
The visit will continue to foster the Vietnam – Germany energy cooperative relationship, which has been built and developed previously throughout the Vietnamese representatives’ visit to Berlin in March 2022 within the framework of the Berlin Energy Transition Dialogue and the Vietnamese- German Energy Day, as well as the BMWK’s visit to Vietnam in last November 2022.
In the morning of Feb 20, the BMWK’s representatives met and discussed with Vietnam Electricity EVN the topics of grid integration and grid operation of offshore wind platforms. According to international experiences, connecting those forms of renewable energy such as offshore wind into the grid system can cause some challenges in operation. The experts also shared that countries around the world are having increasing ambition in renewable energy, which leads to new trends in developing offshore wind, such as increasing of power electronic converter and interface devices. These trends could result in consequences that affect the stability of power system operations. To use investment capital effectively and be convenient for operation, the experts suggested that Viet Nam should go for TSO model to reach the ambitious target on offshore wind development. The model could help to use resources more efficiently and avoid fragment investments.
Also on February 20, BMWK’s mission had an afternoon working session with the Department of Electricity and Renewable Energy Authority (Ministry of Industry and Trade) on the main topic of considering upgrading the current form of cooperation “Energy Dialogue” to “Energy Partnership” between Viet Nam and Germany. With the “Energy Partnership”, bilateral cooperation would be more comprehensive. The two sides discussed and selected several key topics to focus on supporting cooperation within the framework of the Vietnamese-German Energy Partnership, including technical and financial support for grid development, offshore wind, pricing mechanisms for renewable energy projects, power storage (including hydropower), green hydrogen, public-private partnerships in the energy sector. The two sides agreed to select 2-3 main topics within the framework of the Vietnamese – German Energy Partnership.
The second day of the visit continued to be the working sessions on two main topics related to the cooperation between Vietnamese and German enterprises on energy efficiency, and opportunities and challenges in hydrogen development in Viet Nam.
The morning session was a roundtable discussion on cooperation among 11 Vietnamese and German enterprises in the field of energy efficiency (EE). The workshop aimed at expanding the knowledge exchange network, connecting enterprises in the industry, and thereby laying the foundation for a future business partnership. Many difficulties while implementing EE projects were shared by the EE service providers in Vietnam. Due to the low awareness of EE, as well as the lack of reference information and examples of successful pilot projects; manufacturing business owners are skeptical of the success of the projects. Additionally, the workers’ capacity to operate advanced technology at the production building is limited. This resulted in the energy efficiency projects that were in operation failing to achieve their expected results, which became bad precedents in the industry. Therefore, it is difficult for service providers to convince manufacturing business owners to invest in EE projects.
In these circumstances, BMWK and GIZ have agreed to support the implementation of several pilot projects having a combined business model between German solution providers and Vietnamese consulting firms. Successful pilot projects will create a premise to help EE service providers easily convince manufacturing business owners to invest in this field.
The afternoon session discussed potential opportunities and challenges to develop the green hydrogen industry in Vietnam. Following the success of the workshop on green hydrogen organized by GIZ and MOIT on November 30 last year, this workshop focused on discussing the potential of exporting green hydrogen and the applications of green hydrogen in Vietnam. Training programs on PtX technology run by ESP during the 2021 – 2022 period were also introduced at the event. The training were provided to officials from the Ministry of Industry and Trade, the Institute of Energy, EVN, etc. In 2023, ESP plans to continue implementing other courses to train the trainers on PtX technology, as well as offering basic training courses nationwide. The training are expected to support the industry’s players on capacity building, contributing to the sustainability of the green hydrogen industry.
After this visit of BMWK to Vietnam, the Vietnamese high-level delegation will also pay a working visit to Berlin, Germany to continue fostering the energy partnership between the two countries. The trip is expected to take place in March 2023.