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|Le Thanh Quan, director general of the MPI's Department for Economic Zones Management chaired the meeting|
On February 25, the steering committee on the development of eco-industrial parks (IPs) in Vietnam following the Global Ecological Industrial Park Programme was held, chaired by Le Thanh Quan, director general of the Ministry of Planning and Investment's (MPI) Department for Economic Zones Management.
The project aims to improve the economic, environmental, and social efficiency of some industries in Vietnam through the implementation of eco-IPs.
"Vietnam is one of two countries (out of seven in the programme) to achieve the expected disbursement progress, which was highly appreciated by the donors at the mid-term evaluation conference of the programme," highlighted Quan.
At the meeting, deputy director general of the Department for Economic Zones Management Vuong Thi Minh Hieu, reported the performance of the project last year. Accordingly, capacities had been increased and policies integrated on eco-IPs in Vietnam; and some localities converted normal IPs into eco-IPs.
"The analysis and update of policies related to eco-IPs were completed, with good results in 2021. Vietnam's policy frameworks on eco-IPs have been praised by the international community from the very beginning," said Hieu. "The steering committee now plans to develop training programmes for all stakeholders through online and face-to-face meetings."
United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) expert Nguyen Tram Anh said that the project will focus on strengthening national institutions in the development of eco-IPs; carrying out communication and raising awareness about eco-IPs; improving the capacity of industrial zones (IZs) and enterprises to meet national standards on eco-IPs; and carrying out the practical implementation of eco-IPs in pilot IZs.
The steering committee also pointed out some challenges during the deployment. Hit by the pandemic, numerous activities of the project were suspended, changed to an online method, with their performance lowered. Some enterprises have changed their scale and status.
At the meeting, representatives from the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), UNIDO, Global Environment Facility (GEF), and localities proposed to extend the time of the project; the recruitment of more local staff; and strengthen the links among involved institutions.
The project had been approved by the MPI with Decision No.702/QD-BKHDT in 2020 thanks to the financial aid of SECO and UNIDO of about $1.82 million.
The project is carried out for three years (2020-2023) to support Vietnam in completing eco-IPs and promote this model at Dinh Vu, Hoa Khanh, and Amata IZs, among others.