Electricity access and local value creation for the un-electrified population in Vietnam

Energy access is essential for economic and human development and is an important driver for the economic development of a country. Access to modern forms of energy, especially electricity, becomes even more important for the socio-economic development of rural areas (which lag behind urban areas in terms of infrastructure development). “Full electrification” to achieve social and economic development goals (and SDGs) in Vietnam requires 24/7 electricity access for every household, family, farming settlement and local enterprise, even in rural communities. To achieve this goal, the government of Vietnam has focused primarily on providing access by extending the centralised grid.
Approximately 98 % of households in both urban and rural areas of the country have been electrified through this means, but electricity access to the remaining 2% of the population, predominantly located in regions with terrain unfavourable to grid expansion, has become a technoeconomic moot point. To this end, discussions have explored whether cost-effective, off-grid renewable energy (RE) alternatives could assist the electrification of these remaining populations and further drive the socioeconomic development of these population groups.

Thus, this study centres on providing answers to two main questions:

  • What is the best approach to provide electricity access to the remaining 2 % of Vietnamese households located in rural areas: grid expansion or off-grid renewable energy options?
  • Can cheaper off-grid alternatives engender local value creation in rural areas?

Electricity access and local value creation for the un-electrified population in Vietnam.  Assessing the co-benefits of decarbonising the power sector.


Year of publication: 2019

Editors: Ayodeji Okunlola, Laura Nagel, Nguyen Thi Mai Dung, Sebastian Helgenberger, Nguy
Thi Khanh, Nguyen Thi Mai Dung and Sarah Kovac – IASS, GreenID, UfU

Technical implementation: Nguyen Duc Song, Dr. Nguyen Anh Tuan, Nguyen Chi Phuc –
Institute of Energy, Vietnam

DOI: 10.2312/iass.2019/023

This study is part of a 2019 series of two studies assessing the co-benefits of decarbonising the power sector in Vietnam. Edited by IASS, GreenID and UfU.