ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
Green growth vital for Viet Nam
Dependency on coal and its carbon pollution for economic growth was no longer sustainable, officials told a forum here.
The officials, speaking at the Viet Nam Economic Forum for 2014 on Friday, said the country needed to focus on environmentally friendly business practices.
Green growth was essential for the economy and the people's well-being, said Dang Huy Dong, deputy minister of Planning and Investment.
The ministry recently announced a plan to promote the use of renewable energy and reduce carbon's hold on the economy. But, Dong said, this would require significant backing from domestic and foreign businesses who would need to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions, use more clean energy, and recycle more waste products.
Tran Dinh Thien, head of the Viet Nam Institute of Economics, said the Government would also have to reallocate human resources to commit to the green cause.
"More attention needs to be paid to developing technology industries and educating laboratory workers better to support them," Thien said. "The three major shortcomings of the national economy are its improper growth model, lack of competitiveness, and State governance."
To meet the ministry's green growth targets, Thien said Viet Nam needed to overcome its weaknesses by restructuring all sectors, especially manufacturing.
He also said upgrading infrastructure could improve the national economy and help attract foreign investment.
The country should also use technology to make agriculture practices more environmentally friendly, Thien said. To accomplish this, more businesses should involve themselves in agriculture, alongside farmers.
Nguyen Thi Tue Anh, deputy head of the Central Institute For Economic Management, said at the forum that the country needed to handle environmental protection and economic growth in tandem.
It could do this by encouraging businesses to reduce emissions and use less harmful technology.
In the long term, environmentally-friendly growth meant investing more in preserving, developing and effectively using natural resources, as well as curbing emissions.
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