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Vietnam, UK look to bolster cooperation in environmental issues

Deputy Prime Minister Tran Hong Ha received British Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Therese Coffey in Hanoi on April 12.

Deputy PM Ha appreciated assistance from the UK and other G7 countries joining the Just Energy Transition Partnership (JETP) for Vietnam to realise the commitments made at the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26).

He highly valued the cooperation in multiple fields between the British Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and agencies of the Vietnamese Government, noting that in recent years, the two sides have promoted ties related to global solutions such as implementing measures for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, adapting to climate change, conserving biodiversity and forest, building smart cities, protecting landscapes, shifting crop structures, minimising food losses, and developing e-commerce platforms.

Ha called on the British Government to assist Vietnam to make comprehensive assessment of impacts of energy transition, carry out greenhouse gas emission reduction measures, adapt to climate change, and achieve net zero emissions by 2050.

Voicing Vietnam’s support for the target of protecting at least 30% of the global ocean by 2030, the Deputy PM said this target requires strong cooperation and new conservation methodology and mindset of all countries.

He asked the two countries to enhance collaboration to seek ways for developing their economies in tandem with recovering ecosystems and conserving biodiversity so as to obtain sustainable development.

In terms of energy transition, he suggested the UK help Vietnam boost researching and developing renewable energy projects, especially offshore ones, to replace coal-fueled thermal power plants, while giving technological support for operating the national energy system when the rate of wind and solar energy is increasing.

Besides, the host expressed his hope that the UK will actively transfer scientific and technological advances to help Vietnam develop agriculture sustainably. He also called for favourable conditions for agricultural and fishery products to access each other’s markets.

At the meeting, Coffey thanked Vietnam for supporting the UK’s participation in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).

She affirmed that her country is ready to cooperate with and assist Vietnam to deal with challenges so as to soon achieve net zero emissions as committed at COP26.

The Secretary of State noted the UK’s willingness to share its approach to resources in economic development and cooperate with Vietnam within the global biodiversity framework and other spheres.

Applauding the Southeast Asian country’s efforts against illegal wildlife trade, she said the UK is also ready to work with Vietnam in this field to raise public awareness of the wildlife’s importance to the environment.

Regarding the two countries’ memorandum of understanding on cooperation in the biodiversity fund, Coffey said she hopes both sides will continue supporting each other to reduce biodiversity loss, mitigate climate change impacts at the local and trans-boundary levels, and realise international commitments./.