As the Voice of Russia recently reported: “Vietnam’s power industry plans to build 13 nuclear power units with an overall generating capacity of 15 gigawatts by 2030″.  Vietnam.net outlined: “The nuclear power market in Vietnam at present is estimated to be worth about $10 billion and is expected to rise to $50 billion by 2030″.  US and Russian nuclear industries (assisted by their governments) have begun to work with the Vietnamese government and others in the country to help construct and provide other assistance to help make these projects a reality.

US nuclear industry visits Vietnam

As Vietnam.net reported – the U.S. Embassy in Hanoi and the Ministry of Science and Technology of Vietnam organized a seminar this month for a US nuclear trade policy delegation composed of governmental officials, industry associations and lawyers – to meet with Vietnamese government agencies, businesses and experts to discuss issues related to practical experience in developing civilian nuclear power.

A plan for development

According to World Nuclear News (WNN) – Vietnam’s Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung recently established a new National Council for Atomic Energy Development, “tasked with identifying strategies and priorities for the development of nuclear energy in the country”.

“Vietnam’s plans for nuclear power are well advanced” WNN outlined. “The country’s Atomic Energy Law came into force in 2009 and intergovernmental agreements in place with Russia and Japan allow for the construction of its first two nuclear power plants, both in Ninh Thuan province. Costruction work has yet to begin, although the first Russian-designed unit at Ninh Thuan I is pencilled in to begin operation by the end of 2020.”

Russia to build new nuclear plant

Nguyen Tan Dung visited to Russia this month to visit with Russian President Vladimir Putin to formally announce the deal for Russia to build an advanced nuclear power plant in Vietnam, as well as oil and other energy related projects.

Opportunity for lawyers

Vietnam’s law firms, particularly those with hybrid law and public affairs practices – are well placed to help advise potential prime and sub-contractors to these projects – as well as other companies which supply the sector and who will be interested in entering the Vietnamese market to do so.  American, Russian and other foreign firms with energy practices and significant sectoral ties in their home countries can seek to assist domestic companies enter the Vietnamese market.  Designed and implemented properly – a business development initiative by lawyers around this opportunity could prove very lucrative.

Posted by John Grimley

John Grimley edits and publishes Asia Law Portal and is the author of A Comprehensive Guide to the Asia-Pacific Legal Markets. He specializes in providing writing, editing, research and strategy services to the corporate and professional services sectors. Between 2002 and 2008, he established and directed the European representative business development office of US AmLaw 100 law and public policy firm Patton Boggs LLP. At the inception of his career, he served as a writer to the President of the United States in the White House. A licensed American lawyer, he holds a Juris Doctor from the University of San Diego School of Law.

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