National power utility plans structural reforms

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State-owned Electricity of Vietnam on Wednesday announced a plan to restructure its organization by forming between two and four generation companies to manage its power plants.

The formation of these companies is to prepare for a competitive generation market in the future, the power monopoly said. It has proposed that the first generation company be established this year to see how the new model works out.

EVN now controls all transmission grids and is the sole power buyer in the country. It also holds the majority of the country's generation capacity.

The generation companies will be wholly owned and supervised by EVN, it said.

Some large power projects, including Hoa Binh, Yaly, Son La and future nuclear power plants, will still be managed directly by EVN. Those projects are expected to account for 13.46 percent of total power output in Vietnam in 2015.

The Government Office, however, said EVN has not made it clear why it needs to establish new generation companies and what their roles are in a competitive power market.

The Electricity Regulatory Authority of Vietnam said it agrees with EVN on keeping key power plants under its control to maintain the country's energy security. But the authority said if new generation companies are formed and they are still owned by EVN, there would not be a market-based power industry in its true sense.

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