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Wednesday, October 5, 2022

U.S., Vietnam accelerate energy transition, climate change adaptation

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – The United States Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry and Vietnamese Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh have decided to work intensively toward an accelerated energy transition for Vietnam and make efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The decision was made during Kerry’s visit to HCMC, Ben Tre Province and Hanoi from September 2 to 6 to see the climate impacts in the Mekong Delta region and for bilateral climate talks with the Government of Vietnam, building on conversations that started in 2013 regarding Vietnam’s energy transition.

Vietnam is determined to undertake significant policy and reform efforts to implement its 2050 net zero emissions commitment and to rapidly transition to an efficient and clean energy economy and phase down coal power, including by accelerating the development of large-scale renewable energy.

At a meeting with Prime Minister Chinh on September 5, Kerry expressed the U.S. intention to catalyze global support for Vietnam’s energy transition through technical assistance and efforts to mobilize public and private investment, including grants and concessional loans. He welcomed Vietnam’s intention to facilitate the connection of complete and nearly-complete renewable energy installations to the national energy grid.

In addition, Vietnam expressed its resolve to finalize as soon as possible the Power Development Plan 8 (PDP-8) to put the country’s power sector on a trajectory consistent with its 2050 net zero goal, with ambitious goals for growth in renewable energy, and maximum efforts to limit the further development of coal power.

To implement PDP-8, Vietnam intends to make use of its own domestic resources, along with the cooperation and support of the United States and the international community, especially from developed countries, in terms of finance and technology.

Vietnam is also determined to significantly increase high-voltage transmission capacity to support greater levels of renewable energy and to take steps toward facilitating the ability of the private sector and development finance institutions to invest in transmission while ensuring energy affordability.

Kerry and PM Chinh noted the impacts of the ongoing energy crisis and resolved to deepen investments in renewable energy, minimizing exposure to fuel price volatility, enhancing energy security and maximizing consumer benefits.

Kerry expressed his commitment to the bilateral relationship and expressed strong support for further enhanced high-level communication between the two countries in the coming months.

“The United States is committed to working with the G7 countries and others to support an ambitious and just energy transition and climate change adaptation in Vietnam,” said Kerry.

PM Chinh said, “Climate change is a global issue, so a global approach is required. Vietnam calls for justice and fairness in the fight against climate change. Vietnam is committed to the rapid implementation of the 2050 net zero emissions pledge by speeding the progress toward renewable energy and working closely with international partners, including the United States, in doing so.

“Vietnam calls for concrete international support in the wind and solar potential assessment, technology development and transfer, renewable energy and supporting industries development, concessional financing, human resources development, management skills, and enhancing the resilience of vulnerable communities in Vietnam, including the Mekong Delta.”

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