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After batteries, China eyes green hydrogen capacity in Vietnam

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Huadian Group, a Chinese government-owned undertaking, is looking to set up a $2.4 billion green hydrogen plant in Vietnam, news emerged.

The company has partnered with Vietnam's Minh Quang on the project, which could feature up to 2,000 MW of renewable capacity -- a 1,200 MW wind power plant and an 800 MW solar power plant -- powering a water electrolysis plant for production of green hydrogen, in addition to storage and transport facilities.

The project would form part of the Dong Gio Linh industrial cluster in the central Vietnamese province of Quang Tri. Huadian has reportedly submitted its proposal to Quang Tri authorities earlier this month.

The first phase would see the companies set up an electrolysis plant powered by 200 MW of solar energy. The full project, once complete, is forecast to generate 60,000 tonnes of green hydrogen a year and earn $250 million in revenue.

Vietnam last month unveiled a national hydrogen policy to achieve a production capacity of 100,000-500,000 tonnes of hydrogen per annum by 2030, scaling up to 10-20 million tonnes per annum by 2050, using both renewable energy and carbon capture technologies. The government wants the fuel to meet 10 percent of the country's energy needs by the middle of the century.

Chinese companies have been seeking to set up operations in other countries as part of attempts to bypass country-specific restrictions on imports levied by some nations, and to temper global fears over their control of new energy technology such as electric vehicle batteries, lithium processing, raw materials, and electrolyzers for making green hydrogen.

Last year, two Chinese battery makers sought to set up battery plants in the Southeast Asian nation, which has electric vehicle and component ambitions of its own

The Huadian Group already has multiple investments in Vietnam. These include a 200 MW wind power plant and a $2 billion, 1,320 MW thermal power plant. None of these projects are located in Quang Tri.

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Vietnam's national hydrogen strategy targets 10-20 mtpa by 2050 -  

Vietnam has recently approved its national hydrogen production strategy, seeking international investors to establish a production ecosystem in the country for both green and blue hydrogen meant for domestic and export markets.
Author : Mandar Bakre
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