Ireland’s Mainstream Renewable Power will team up with General Electric to build $1.5 billion (€1.3 billion) of new wind power in Vietnam with projects supporting the country’s ambition to fuel economic growth with clean energy.
Mainstream signed a deal with GE’s Energy Financial Services unit, which earlier this year agreed with the Vietnamese government to install at least a gigawatt of new wind power, according to a statement by both companies.
They could build as many as 10 projects starting in 2018, in the Binh Thuan and Ninh Thuan provinces in southeastern Vietnam, as well as Bac Lieu and Soc Trang provinces near the Mekong Delta, Andy Kinsella, Mainstream’s chief operating officer, said.
The wind farms will be financed through a joint-development agreement, of which about $300 million may be equity and the remainder funded through debt, he said.
Vietnam had just 60 megawatts of wind power capacity in 2015, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance. The country plans to install as much as 800 megawatts by 2020, rising to six gigawatts by 2030, the London-based researcher said. The country is expected to import increasing amounts of coal and gas to fuel economic growth over the next decade.
“Part of the government’s plan is to use renewables to offset that,” said Kinsella.
Mainstream was set up in 2008 by energy entrepreneur Eddie O'Connor after Airtricity, the wind energy company he founded two decades ago, was sold to Scottish & Southern Energy, now SSE.