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VBF: FDI firms at the forefront of green development in Vietnam
Phi Nhat 21:35, 2024/03/19
Under the theme "FDI Enterprises Pioneer in Green Growth", this year's Vietnam Business Forum promotes dialogue and co-operation among stakeholders for sustainable economic growth.

Vietnam can benefit from setting clear-cut standards and accelerating legislation that supports its strong COP26 commitments on sustainability and net zero carbon emissions, said the European Chamber of Commerce (EuroCham) in Vietnam at the Prime Minister's Meeting with FDI Enterprises and the Annual Vietnam Business Forum (VBF) in Hanoi today [March 19].

 The Vietnam Business Forum is jointly organized by the Ministry of Planning and Investment, the World Bank (WB) and the International Finance Corporation (IFC). Photo: Phi Nhat

Speaking at the event, EuroCham President Gabor Fluit suggested that ESG [environmental, social and governance] standards should be consolidated into specific legal sources and that additional legislation should be enacted to fill current gaps and provide clarity for foreign investors.

There is also a need to raise awareness of ESG standards in M&A investments among relevant stakeholders in the private and state sectors. Transparency, sustainability, and environmental protection should be promoted throughout the public administration sector and for M&A investments, which is in line with Vietnam's net zero carbon targets and investors' understanding of their environmental implications, he said.

The Forum also released its ESG report, which gathered input from 665 foreign business leaders in Vietnam and highlighted green solutions and investment as one of the two strategic focus areas to enhance Vietnam's competitiveness in attracting foreign investment.

“Vietnam needs to actively promote market-oriented solutions to supplement green technologies in energy, waste management, and water treatment," the report emphasized.

This fosters environmental sustainability and attracts companies that focus on ESG issues - a segment that is growing rapidly in today's global marketplace. Companies are increasingly prioritizing ESG factors in their investment decisions. Adherence to ESG standards is necessary to attract foreign-invested companies planning to establish or expand existing operations, according to the study.

"By prioritizing strategic actions to promote green investment and invest in the workforce of the future, Vietnam can strengthen its position as a leading FDI [foreign direct investment] destination while promoting long-term economic growth and fulfilling environmental responsibilities," stated the VBF report.

These are just some of the recommendations that have been made by foreign organizations and companies to boost the implementation of Vietnam's green growth goals.

Speaking at the Forum, Nitin Kapoor, Co-Chairman of the VBF, said that this year's Annual Vietnam Business Forum & FDI Business Conference served as a platform to foster dialogue and cooperation among stakeholders committed to sustainable economic growth. 

“Sustainability is an imperative for the prosperity of our planet and future generations. By spotlighting the pivotal role of FDI enterprises in pioneering green growth strategies, we aimed to inspire actionable solutions that benefit businesses and society,” he added.

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh (middle). Photo: VBF

At the event, Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh shared his perspective on green growth, emphasizing that Vietnam has identified green growth as one of the two key factors (along with digital transformation) in the process of economic restructuring and transition to a growth model that enhances productivity, quality, efficiency, competitiveness and sustainable development.

The Prime Minister called on foreign invested enterprises (FIEs)  to continue to accompany and support Vietnam in five key areas: capital sources, institutional reforms, technology, governance and human resources development.

He urged FIEs to join Vietnam in implementing green transformation and sustainable development in the spirit of the "Three Pioneers": to be pioneers in transforming awareness, mindset and action; to be pioneers in technology transfer and innovation for green growth; and to be pioneers in implementing specific green growth projects to renew traditional growth drivers and add new ones, including digital transformation, circular economy, sharing economy and knowledge economy.

Chinh also expressed the hope that international organizations and development partners will continue to assist Vietnam in the spirit of the "Three Intensifications", including cooperation, exchange of experience and policy consultation; financial support and technical assistance; and co-operation in training and human resource development.

 Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh (R) and foreign-invested enterprises at the meeting. Photo: VBF
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