Here comes the sun (and wind): Vietnam’s low-cost renewables revolution and its implications for coal power investments

In this note presented the findings of coal power economics analysis for Vietnam to understand the potential for asset stranding and relative competitiveness of renewable energy. Coal has long been considered the least-cost option for power in Vietnam. However, that is quickly changing as a confluence of factors are disrupting coal’s pre-eminence. If Vietnam remains committed to coal over the long-term, it will be forced to choose between subsidising coal generation and power prices (which will impact the fiscal health of the state) or increase power prices (which will hurt consumers and undermine competitiveness). Vietnamese policymakers need to carefully track the economics of coal power to ensure new investments cease as soon as possible and retirement schedules are implemented when coal becomes a net-liability to the power system.