Renewable energy is still a growth sector in Southeast Asia, but a steady drip of reports about idle off-grid installations, oversupply and regulatory bottlenecks has thrown the rush to roll out cleantech into question.
Vietnam is emerging as a regional winner as a tempestuous 2020 becomes history and the world looks ahead to 2021.
While energy demand is down globally – by approximately 5% in 2020, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) – renewable energy rollout will continue to grow this year, and nowhere is that more true than in Vietnam, which is undergoing an offshore-wind bonanza.
After years of strong growth, the renewable energy sector is set to take a breather – and likely into next year. Immediate demand for energy has collapsed, oil prices have fallen in tandem and capital markets are in turmoil and therefore unlikely to support capital intensive projects.
As world-wide business activity comes to a standstill and Covid-19 dominates global headlines, it is easy to overlook other developments and business deals that are still ongoing.
Taiwan’s advantages as a place to do business are manifold: it’s strategically located within easy reach of China, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and Malaysia. It has a massive industrial base – Taiwan is the world’s fourth largest electronics producer – with significant research and development (R&D) supported by public spending. It also has a highly educated and skilled workforce.