Market Research on Energy-Efficiency Air-Conditioners in Vietnam

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Under a subcontract from CLASP as well as complementary support from the World Bank, Econoler worked with the Government of Vietnam and the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MOIT) towards implementing an Energy Standards and Labeling Program designed to remove barriers that have persistently hindered the widespread manufacturing, importation and adoption of energy-efficient appliances.

In order to design a pilot program for labeling of air conditioners, surveys and interviews were conducted with customs officials in order to document the state of the market as well as the principal barriers to a scaling-up of energy-efficient appliances. The market appears to be highly crowded with importers and distributors of these appliances while only a handful of manufacturers are actually based in Vietnam, some of which only act as “assembly plants” for foreign-designed AC units. The study included a survey of 74 of the largest manufacturers, importers and distributors of air conditioners and indicated that approximately 400,000 small to medium sized air conditioners were sold in 2008 in Vietnam. The study further indicated that that the efficiency levels ranged from very low to high. Lastly, it was found that there was no strong correlation between the price and efficiency of air conditioners.

The increase in sales of AC units has resulted in increasing pressure on the grid/electricity supply. These increased sales partly due to the improving economic conditions of the Vietnamese middle class and to an increase in economic activity through the channel of small- and medium-sized companies (SMEs). These trends are likely to continue into the future suggesting that now is an ideal time to implement S&L.


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