Hanoi, Vietnam and Washington, DC, U.S.A. --- (METERING.COM) --- September 20 - Vietnam is to introduce smart grid technologies, as part of its distribution efficiency project for which funding has just been approved by the World Bank.

The project is aimed to provide electricity users across the country with better quality and reliable electricity services, and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through efficiency improvements.

In addition to the introduction of smart grid technologies, the project includes the reinforcement and expansion of the MV and LV distribution networks of the country’s five power corporations, and the provision of technical assistance and capacity building to the power corporations and Vietnam’s Electricity Regulatory Authority.

The smart grid component will focus on the automation of distribution network operations and introduction of advanced metering systems at key substations and electricity consumers of each of the power corporations. This will include the tools as well as two-way communications systems. Initially the focus will be on the key distribution substations and the larger electricity customers at the power corporations that are most prepared.

“The efficiency and modernization investments under the distribution efficiency project will improve the reliability of energy supply to industries and households and contribute to Vietnam’s socio-economic development” said Hung Tien Van, senior energy specialist and task team leader for the project. “Reliable electricity supply will further reduce the need of households to use alternative and often more polluting fuels, such as coal and kerosene, to meet their domestic energy needs and should have positive gender and poverty impacts.”

The total project cost is $800 million. The World Bank contributes $449 million and $30 million comes from the Clean Investment Fund (CTF) towards the implementation of smart grid technologies. The Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID) provides $8 million in grants for technical assistance and capacity building. The remaining investment of $313 million will come from the government of Vietnam in counterpart funds.