The Global Infrastructure Facility (GIF)’s Governing Council has approved $1.5 million in funding to support the World Bank’s work with the Vietnamese Government on the Solar Pilot Auction Program.

The program will help address Vietnam’s increasing demand for energy and promote inclusive growth by strengthening the enabling environment for the private sector.

“We are working closely with the government to bring more private resources to the energy sector, where the needs are huge and urgent,” said Mr. Ousmane Dione, World Bank Country Director for Vietnam. “GIF’s support comes at a critical time to help the country overcome multiple remaining obstacles to further develop solar power, including financing and risk allocation.”

The Ministry of Industry and Trade’s Solar Competitive Bidding Program is part of the government’s broader efforts to accelerate investments in energy efficiency and renewable energy to increase the country’s diversification of electricity generation and reduce CO2 emissions. It aims to send 12GW of solar energy to the national grid by 2030.

“This will be the first solar auction program to be implemented in Vietnam that would have large scale replicability,” said Mr. Jason Lu, Head of the GIF. “We are pleased to support the government as they mobilize private financing through standardized, transparent, and programmatic approaches.”

Vietnam is actively seeking to attract private investment and use more public-private partnerships in the energy sector, but needs to adapt its current framework to enable the competitive selection of independent power producers and minimize the cost of solar generation. With the support of the World Bank and the GIF, it is developing competitive bidding schemes to deploy utility-scale solar PV.

The GIF supports end-to-end transaction advisory services to governments in developing countries to build pipelines of bankable, sustainable infrastructure programs and projects that are attractive to private capital. As a global collaboration platform, the GIF connects governments, multilateral development banks, private sector investors and financiers, and other infrastructure stakeholders to deliver climate-smart and trade-enabling infrastructure in developing countries. It is supported by the governments of Australia, Canada, China, Japan, and Singapore, as well as the World Bank.

Working with the World Bank’s Energy Global Practice, the GIF will help the government design and structure the auction program to transition from a feed-in tariff regime to a sustainable competitive auction scheme for solar generation.