|A conference held in Vĩnh Long Province on August 19 discusses the role of green credit in mitigating the impacts of climate change on the Mekong Delta and measures to boost green credit. — VNA/VNS Photo|
VĨNH LONG — Amid the adverse impacts of climate change, green finance plays a very important role in the sustainable development of the Cửu Long (Mekong) River Delta, a conference heard in Vĩnh Long last week.
The delta is one of the world’s most vulnerable regions to climate change, with communities and the environment there faced with rising sea levels and salinity intrusion as a result.
Green finance could help prevent climate change impacts by funding energy efficiency and renewable energy projects, while green banking could help raise awareness of climate change and sustainability, and encourage people to adopt more environment-friendly practices, experts said.
Speaking at the seminar titled ‘Green Credit in the Mekong Delta - Opportunities, Challenges and Development Trends’, Nguyễn Quốc Bình of the HCM City University of Economics’ Vĩnh Long Province campus said economic activities in the delta were still largely dependent on exploiting natural resources and cheap labour.
Many provinces there still prioritise short-term economic development rather than long-term sustainable goals associated with social security and environmental protection.
“Green credit will [persuade] businesses to shift to environmentally friendly businesses and actively support the community.”
Dr Nguyễn Hữu Huân also of the HCM City University of Economics said: “There is a close relationship between green banking and climate change in the Mekong Delta. Therefore, green banking can help mitigate the impacts of climate change in the Mekong Delta.”
So green banking, if implemented well, would help stop large polluting projects right at the start, and would be an effective solution for transforming the nation’s economy towards green growth, he said.
Lý Nhật Trường, director of the State Bank of Vietnam’s Vĩnh Long office, said banks in the province had been financing green projects in hi-tech and clean agriculture and renewable energy and increasing green consumer loans.
As of June 30 the total outstanding green loans in the province were worth VNĐ700 billion (US$29.9 million), mainly focused on two areas, clean agriculture and renewable energy, he added. — VNS