After more than 25 years in Vietnam, Sembcorp is committed to the country’s sustainability goals. VIR’s Bich Ngoc talked with Charles Chong, head of Sembcorp Development in Vietnam, about the Singaporean group’s achievements and new targets.
Sembcorp has made significant progress by growing its industrial property portfolio. How can its achievements be assessed?
|Charles Chong, head of Sembcorp Development in Vietnam |
Since Sembcorp started Vietnam Singapore Industrial Park (VSIP) in 1996, we have diversified our industrial property portfolio. With VSIP, we pioneered the integrated township and industrial park concept.
In 2022, Sembcorp launched a new smart and sustainable VSIP and obtained a licence for our 12th VSIP, to be developed in the Mekong Delta city of Can Tho. Sembcorp has also completed ready-built warehouses in Haiphong city and Hai Duong province, both in the north.
We are working with Vietnam in its industrialisation and urbanisation journey. We are proud that our projects have brought us closer to the Vietnamese people by generating good employment opportunities, catalysing growth in provinces, establishing communities in new places, and taking care of the disadvantaged in our communities.
In 2022, Sembcorp started its first modern ready-built warehouse in the central province of Quang Ngai. Why did you choose this location for this key project?
We strive to expand our industrial portfolio across Vietnam with a clear vision to provide manufacturers with quality properties in strategic locations. We already established VSIP Quang Ngai in 2013. We have taken a decisive step to become an early mover in modern warehouse development in Quang Ngai because we believe there is demand.
Manufacturers are increasingly moving into Central Vietnam to set up their production bases, as public infrastructures and connectivity have become much improved. Pro-investment government policies are also serving as attractive incentives. In general, Central Vietnam is becoming a competitive region for manufacturing funding.
Agreements have been signed with partners to build and operate a rooftop solar solution in Sembcorp Logistics Park. How does this development align with your solutions for renewable energy in Vietnam?
We signed an MoU with Vietnam-Singapore Smart Energy Solutions. It seeks to deliver economic and environmental benefits to customers through the provision of rooftop solar solutions. It is also a subsidiary of Sembcorp, established to operate solar energy infrastructure to support our industrial properties.
While Vietnam continues to record strong overseas investment inflow for manufacturing and processing, industrialisation should proceed with sustainable energy sources, which are required for companies’ competitiveness and brand reputation. Sembcorp’s rooftop energy solutions help manufacturers – both international and local – to operate green factories and warehouses with clear economic and environmental benefits such as lower electricity tariff and lower carbon footprint, which enables them to meet environmental, social, and governance goals.
Vietnam has committed to be net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. How can Sembcorp contribute to this ambitious strategy?
As governments all worldwide make pledges to reach net-zero carbon emissions, we should expect regulations to follow requiring companies to reduce their carbon footprint. This is a structural change that offers Sembcorp opportunities to offer our solutions for more sustainable development. Sembcorp is focused on delivering innovative solutions that support the energy transition and sustainable development. Early in 2022, we announced new smart and sustainable industrial parks when we launched VSIP Binh Duong III, which will also apply to all new VSIPs. The new modern ready-built warehouses in Quang Ngai and Nghe An provinces are sustainable warehouse buildings that take reference to building standards from Vietnam’s Green Building Council. Sembcorp is also making good progress in solar rooftops for industrial properties in Vietnam, with 93MW gross capacity installed and under development. These solutions are intended to support Vietnam’s growth in a sustainable way.
Increasingly, governments and businesses are looking for greener solutions to support sustainable development. They expect to work with like-minded providers like Sembcorp that have a proven track record in robust urban solutions.
After more than two decades, Sembcorp has developed 11 VSIPs from north to south in Vietnam, generating $17 billion of investment and creating more than 300,000 employment opportunities.
As part of the group’s strategy to transform its portfolio from brown to green, Sembcorp is scaling up investment as part of Vietnam’s National Climate Change Strategy to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.
| ||Sembcorp Industries pioneers in ready-built warehouses in central Vietnam |
Sembcorp Industries celebrates another milestone as it opens its newest warehouse facility in Quang Ngai, making Sembcorp the pioneer in modern ready-built warehouses in central Vietnam.
| ||Sembcorp set to break ground on first ready-built warehouse in Central Vietnam |
Located in the Vietnam-Singapore Industrial Park in Quang Ngai province (VSIP Quang Ngai), Sembcorp Logistics Park is the first ready-built warehouse to provide modern warehousing spaces, promoting operational efficiency and supply chain resilience.
| ||Sembcorp pledges green products and investment in Vietnam |
Seeing so much promising land in Vietnam, Charles Chong, country head at Sembcorp Development Vietnam Co., Ltd. would like to develop more green warehouses across the country.
By Bich Ngoc