Prices will likely not go down because of dwindling resources and increasing dependence on imported minerals, they said.An electricity development plan recently approved by Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc allows customers and power distributors to settle on a price without government intervention, starting in 2024.This will end the monopoly of state-owned Vietnam Electricity (EVN), which has been the sole power distributor in the country for decades.Industry and Trade Minister Tran Tuan Anh said at a recent meeting that the “new market mechanism” will allow electricity prices to “go up and down” instead of only rising, as in previous years.However, experts are skeptical that prices can go down in any sustained manner.Tran Viet Ngai, chairman of the Vietnam Energy Association (VEA), said retail prices will mostly be determined by production costs, which depend on the cost of minerals such as coal or oil.With Vietnam becoming a net importer of coal several years ago due to dwindling domestic coal reserves, retail prices will go up and down according to coal import prices, he said.Hydropower production has been dropping because of water shortages and this will also affect prices. In the first eight months, it fell 13 percent year-on-year, according to EVN.Other alternative… Read full this story
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