|Rui Ludovino, First Counselor in charge of climate action, environment, employment and social policy at the Delegation of the European Union (EU). — Photo baoquocte.vn|
HÀ NỘI — Rui Ludovino, First Counselor in charge of climate action, environment, employment and social policy at the Delegation of the European Union (EU) spoke to Thế giới & Việt Nam (The World and Việt Nam) online newspaper about Việt Nam’s readiness and enthusiasm for green growth as the country strives towards the goal of achieving strong commitments made at the recent UN Climate Change Conference (COP26).
The EU Green Deal, a set of policies that includes new measures and efforts to transform the EU's economy for a sustainable future, has been approved since 2020. Could you tell us about the plan for its implementation, especially after the 26th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP26) on reducing global emissions?
In general, in the new context, the goals of COP26 or the trends and efforts to reduce global emissions will not change the EU's determination to implement the Green Deal. We all know that climate change has and its effects are problems that humanity has noticed before.
The Green Deal was proposed in 2018-2019, but as early as 2009 when the world economy was facing an economic crisis, a United Nations report made a global call to a New Green Deal.
The context is not new. It is what humanity already knows. The scientific knowledge about climate change, and what we know about its impact on the world will be even bigger than we’ve expected.
As we have seen in the last decade, the increasing rate of emissions has urged us to accelerate the implementation of the Green Deal. Climate change is affecting all sectors and types of policies from energy and industry to agriculture and food.
At COP26, EU countries pledged to achieve the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050, so this was part of the Green Deal and EU Climate Walk. What was really glad for us was that many countries also understand the challenge, difficulties and reality of climate change and pledged the same goal. We’re very happy that Việt Nam is among the countries that realises the importance to make this change.
We believe that when we have such commitments, it will help our planet grow greener and more sustainable.
How has the EU been mobilising the financial resources to realise the target of the green growth strategy?
Việt Nam has demonstrated its determination to continue implementing the strategy in the spirit of the Paris Agreement. The Government of Việt Nam has been making great efforts to develop long-term strategy, such as reviewing the National Strategy on Climate Change Adaptation; setting specific commitments on emission reduction targets by 2030; reviewing the green growth strategy.
This is a turning point for Việt Nam and the Government is working hard to adopt the new strategy.
In my opinion, the most important thing for both Việt Nam and the EU at the moment is to create a proper environment for the private sector to come and invest. The private sector that I want to mention here includes both foreign enterprises that want to invest in Việt Nam and Vietnamese private enterprises. Currently, Việt Nam has many large-scale private companies.
It can be seen that Việt Nam is ready with an enthusiasm for green growth and is on a journey towards the goal of implementing strong commitments at COP26 recently. Most importantly, your country finds it’s time to change to create a favourable environment, both legally and financially, to support this process.
In addition to its own budget, the EU also mobilises contributions from member states and the cooperation of many sources. The budget will be spent to serve policy development roadmaps, thereby better supporting the participation of sources.
In order to encourage the participation of the private sector in this process, in my opinion, Việt Nam needs to create a favourable business environment with amended legal regulations, so they can see the attention and encouragement from the Government.
If there is an open business environment, they will certainly be willing to invest.
Specifically, in the EU Green Deal, we clearly define what is clean energy and what is a clean technology, so that businesses can understand and base on the standards to make an investment. We also provide loans with favourable interest rates to encourage the participation of private businesses.
As one of Việt Nam's largest markets, after the Green Deal is applied and comes into effect, how will the EU support Việt Nam to quickly convert production to meet the new deal’s requirement?
Transforming production, meeting consumption, and meeting the requirements of the New Deal are closely related to the circular economy. As you know, production and consumption have a huge impact on the use of natural resources. It can cause problems with emissions and substances that cause climate change, including CO2 emissions.
The implementation of the circular economy is also part of Việt Nam's strategy towards reducing greenhouse gas emissions, reaching net zero emissions by 2050. With this process, the EU commits to accompany and support Việt Nam.
The EU attaches great importance to the circular economy development strategy, in which we focus on international cooperation, exchange of mechanisms and policies to share experiences as well as support transformation and innovation in industries, especially the industrial sector.
For example, in the textile and garment industry, Việt Nam is one of the world's leading textile and garment exporting countries and the EU wants to use clean, green and eco-friendly products from Việt Nam. So we will work together to address this issue. — VNS
Deal in detail
The European Union Green Deal, approved in 2020, is a set of policies that re-establishes the European Commission's commitment to addressing climate and environmental challenges.
This is a new growth strategy that aims to transform the EU into a just and prosperous society, with a modern economy that exploits and uses natural resources efficiently and competitively and achieves net zero emissions by 2050 and economic growth is independent of resource use.
The Green Deal also aims to protect, conserve and enhance the EU's natural capital while protecting the health and well-being of its citizens from the risks and impacts associated with the environment.