The World Bank (WB) has shown its close collaboration with Vietnam in improving the national power network operation by providing 449 million USD to the country’s electricity distribution efficiency project.

The funding formed a credit agreement designed the project, to which the WB signed with the Electricity of Vietnam (EVN) in Hanoi on November 8.

The electricity distribution efficiency project is estimated to cost 800 million USD in total, of which 30 million USD will come from the WB’s Clean Technology Fund (CTF) to finance the use of smart grid technologies.

The Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID) will provide 8 million USD to fund technical assistance and capacity building while the Vietnamese Government will cover the remaining 313 million USD.

The project will focus on improving the efficiency of the national power grid to provide users across Vietnam with better quality and reliable services and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

It covers construction and reinforcement of electricity distribution networks, use of smart grid technologies in distribution, technical assistance and capacity building for the Electricity Regulatory Authority of Vietnam (ERAV) and five power companies to shape effective power usage management programmes.

The WB has, in the past decade, worked closely with the Vietnamese Government in expanding the national power grid coverage from 50 percent in 1996 to 97 percent in 2011./.