Vietnam power utility EVN seeks price hike

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State utility Electricity of Vietnam has requested an increase in power prices, saying it needs more funds to finance new power plants.

The company, also known as EVN, has delayed and scaled down many power projects to cut its investment by more than VND12 trillion, but it still has difficulties raising funds for other projects, news website VnExpress cited Deputy General Director Duong Quang Thanh as saying.

A regulation allowing electricity prices to be adjusted depending on market conditions took effect on June 1. Thanh said the Ministry of Industry and Trade needs to give instructions on the new rule and allow EVN to raise prices soon.

The request came just a few days after the government issued a statement on June 1 saying that electricity prices would not be raised yet, depsite the new policy. Under the rule, retail power prices will be allowed to adjust as often as once every three months.

Right before the policy came into effect, EVN said the group would refrain from price hikes as the economy was still under inflationary pressures. Dang Hoang An, the company's deputy general, told VnExpress that EVN would "suffer the losses on its own." 

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