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Indo-Pacific Business Forum held in Hanoi

Senior government officials, industry executives and partners gathered in Hanoi on October 28 for the Indo-Pacific Business Forum (IPBF), which began in Hanoi on October 28.

The virtual event, co-organised by the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) and the American Chamber of Commerce, aimed to discuss policies and seek ways to connect business communities in the region.

The first IPBF was introduced in Washington DC in 2018. This is the first time Vietnam has hosted the event after the previous one took place in Thailand last year.

At the forum, the PetroVietnam Gas Joint Stock Company (PV GAS) and the US-based AES Corporation signed a joint venture agreement for the development of the Son My LNG Import Terminal Project - a project with a total investment cost of 1.4 billion USD.

Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Tuan Anh said the event is an opportunity for US businesses and investors, as well as those in the region, to come together to share ideas and foster cooperation and partnerships.

VCCI Chairman Vu Tien Loc said the Indo-Pacific business community plays an important role as the regional economy with a focus on security, economic development and management.

In a fast-changing world and in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, technologies and digitalisation bring many opportunities for those who are able to take the lead, said Loc. 

This year marks a quarter of a century since the normalisation of Vietnam-US relations.

Charles Freeman, Vice President of the American Chamber of Commerce, said there have been remarkable changes in the business environment in the region, which has prompted businesses to make adjustments.

Freeman also affirmed the importance of the region to the US' economic interests and that its commitment to the region remained unchanged.

During the forum, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Vietnam Mission announced the launch of the Vietnam Low Emission Energy Program II (V-LEEP II). The five-year, 36-million USD programme is to accelerate Vietnam’s transition to a clean, secure, and market-driven energy system.

USAID V-LEEP II will focus on improving government energy planning practices; increasing competition and private sector involvement in energy service provision; deployment of advanced, clean energy systems; and improving grid planning to incorporate clean energy transmission. It will also help Vietnam attract qualified investors for advanced energy projects and advise private firms to develop high quality and bankable projects.