SINGAPORE: Singapore has teamed up with the US and Vietnam in a groundbreaking move to boost cross-border electricity trade.

The key focus is ramping up renewable energy investments and exploring the potential for a regional subsea cable network.

Singapore Business Review reports that the initiative is spearheaded by the Singapore Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI), the US Department of Energy, and Vietnam’s Ministry of Industry and Trade.

According to MTI, “This is the first such multilateral workstream among the three countries in promoting regional power interconnectivity, with the aim to establish regulatory frameworks, infrastructure, and a supportive ecosystem.”

Building upon the foundation laid by the Vietnam-Singapore energy cooperation agreement inked in October 2022, and ongoing feasibility studies between Singapore and the US on regional energy connectivity, the team aims to expedite the advancement of the ASEAN power grid.

The initiative involves knowledge sharing, capacity building, and fostering consensus on subsea cable matters within the region. The working group’s first meeting took place alongside the IPEF Clean Economy Investor Forum.

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The meeting’s leaders included Tan See Leng, the Second Minister for Trade and Industry, Nguyen Hong Dien, Vietnam’s Minister of Industry and Trade, and Kenneth Vincent, the Director of the US Department of Energy’s Office of Asian Affairs.

Meanwhile, the US International Development Finance Corporation is poised to invest in the Southeast Asia Clean Energy Fund II (SEACEF), subject to congressional approval.

This funding will enable SEACEF to mobilise approximately S$235.46 million (US$175 million) for projects to advance towards a climate-resilient economy and bolster energy security in Southeast Asia.

According to MTI, SEACEF’s investments will act as a catalyst for additional financing from other investors. Target sectors for investment include “clean power, energy storage, energy efficiency, electric mobility, and grid infrastructure.” /TISG