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Australia ready to offer $157mn for Vietnam’s green transition: Australian official

Australia ready to offer $157mn for Vietnam’s green transition: Australian official

Wednesday, April 17, 2024, 15:51 GMT+7
Australia ready to offer $157mn for Vietnam’s green transition: Australian official
Delegates discuss climate action at the Australia-Vietnam Green Economy Summit, which took place in Ho Chi Minh City, southern Vietnam on April 16, 2024. Photo: N. Binh / Tuoi Tre

Australia is willing to provide up to US$157 million for Vietnam’s energy transformation process and climate change response, an Australian official announced on Tuesday. 

Australian Assistant Minister for Climate Change and Energy Jenny McAllister made the announcement while addressing the Australia-Vietnam Green Economy Summit, which opened on Tuesday in Ho Chi Minh City, attracting some 200 businesses, investors, and experts from the two countries.

Conducted by Asialink, Australia's leading center for creative engagement with Asia, and Climateworks Center, an Australia-based non-profit research group, with support from the Australian government, the summit was centered on strengthening green economy opportunities for both countries.  

The Australian government is ready to spend about AU$245 million ($157 million) including AU$150 million ($96 million) for the energy transition process in Vietnam and AU$95 million ($61 million) for the Southeast Asian nation to respond to climate change, Assistant Minister McAllister affirmed. 

This financial support would be of great significance to Vietnamese businesses, which face challenges in finance, knowledge, and administration in the green transition, many delegates commented, adding that this summit would open up a great opportunity for cooperation between the two countries’ enterprises. 

“Cooperation is key to unlocking economic opportunities for Australia and Vietnam as our countries and international partners undergo a clean energy transformation,” McAllister said. 

With the goal of improving renewable energy capacity, Vietnam is becoming an attractive destination for investment as it continues to focus on the long-term objective of net-zero emissions, the Australian official stated.

She stressed that Australia, as a global leader in clean energy technology and sustainable finance, can assist Vietnam in its transition by providing expertise in these areas. 

“Vietnam is poised to play a significant role in the region’s decarbonization and the summit will provide an opportunity to accelerate Australia’s engagement in Vietnam’s green economy transformation,” said Climateworks Center CEO Anna Skarbek.

The country is emerging as one of the fastest-growing energy markets in Asia, with energy demand projected to grow 8-10 percent annually, she added. 

In June 2023, the Australian government announced an AU$105 million ($67.2 million) aid package for sustainable infrastructure planning and private investment in clean energy infrastructure in Vietnam, according to Climateworks Center. 

Asialink CEO Martine Letts considered the summit a perfect platform for Australia to start tapping into green economy investment and trade opportunities in Vietnam.

Deputy chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City administration Vo Van Hoan said the southern metropolis has undergone rapid urbanization and is facing significant challenges in sustainable development.

As a driving force for Vietnam, the city always strives to pioneer the implementation of important national policies and strategies, including those on green growth toward sustainable development in the 2024-30 period.

To achieve the goals of economic prosperity and environmental sustainability, the city needs a lot of resources, from financial investments to human capital, the official stated. 

The city is calling for investment in 28 projects included in a green growth program that has been launched recently by the local administration in conjunction with the World Bank, with a total investment of VND160 trillion ($6.3 billion), Hoan told the summit. 

Prominent among these projects is the one to turn Saigon Hi-Tech Park into the first Net-Zero High-Tech Park in Vietnam. 

Other notable projects will transform the city’s economy from labor-intensive and resource-intensive to an economy using renewable energy.

The city has set a goal of clean, renewable electricity accounting for 35-45 percent of the total national energy resources by 2030, while Vietnam is striving to meet its international commitment to reach net-zero emissions by 2050, Hoan said.

Vietnam and Australia established diplomatic relations in 1973 and the two nations entered a comprehensive partnership in 2009.

Six years later, they lifted their ties to an enhanced comprehensive partnership before elevating it to a strategic partnership in March 2018.

On March 7, 2024, the two nations pushed their ties to the highest level in Vietnam's international relations – comprehensive strategic partnership – during an official visit to Australia by Vietnamese Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh. 

Currently, Australia is Vietnam’s seventh-largest trading partner and Vietnam is Australia’s 10th-largest commercial partner.

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Vinh Tho - Nhu Binh / Tuoi Tre News


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