The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has provided a US$37.8 million loan to Vietnamese firm TTC Energy to develop and operate a 50MW solar PV plant in Tay Ninh Province in Vietnam.
The loan for the Gulf Solar Power Project comprises a US$11.3 million A loan, while a B loan of up to US$18.9 million was funded by Bangkok Bank, Siam Commercial Bank, and Standard Chartered Bank (Thai). The innovative project finance structure, said an ADB release, ensures the bankability of the project and will help catalyse commercial financing for the PV project.
An additional US$7.6 million loan was provided by the Leading Asia’s Private Infrastructure Fund, which is supported by the Japan International Cooperation Agency. This loan should allow other lenders to provide long-tenor, US dollar-denominated financing, the ADB said.
The solar power project, planned 50 kilometres northwest of Ho Chi Minh City, will directly serve the electricity demand of residents and businesses of the major city and surrounding areas.
Jackie B. Surtani, director of Infrastructure Finance Division at ADB’s Private Sector Operations Department, remarked in a statement: “Apart from providing much-needed financing to develop solar power in Vietnam, the project will also help reduce perceived risks in the country’s renewable energy sector.”
Yupapin Wangviwat, executive director of Gulf Energy Development Public Company Limited (GED), which owns 90% of TTC, said: “We believe the project’s fundamentals were improved significantly as a result of its competitive financing structure and longer tenor led by ADB, and we are confident that the project will be developed successfully according to plan.”
The Government of Vietnam is aiming for renewables including hydropower to account for 21% of its energy mix by 2030, to meet rapidly rising energy needs in one of the world's fastest-growing economies. The policy push includes plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 25% by 2030.
Earlier this month, ADB said it would support plans by Vietnam to auction a 350-400MW pipeline of two floating PV projects this year and next, in a bid to drive competition after a subsidy rush congested the grid.