General

Prime Minister receives Belgian diplomat, business leader

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh hosted a reception for Belgian Ambassador to Vietnam Karl Van Den Bossche and Francois Michel, CEO of John Cockerill Group – a mechanical engineering firm of Belgium, in Hanoi on May 17.

During the meeting, PM Chinh affirmed Vietnam is consistent with its foreign policy of independence, self-reliance, peace, friendship, cooperation and development, diversification and multilateralisation of relations, and extensive, intensive, practical and effective international integration.

According to the Vietnamese leader, in the context of many difficulties and challenges in recent times, Vietnam has still maintained macroeconomic stability, effectively controlled inflation, promoted growth and ensured great balances. The Southeast Asian nation is still an attractive investment destination.

Vietnam has so far signed 16 free trade agreements (FTAs) with more than 60 economies around the world and is negotiating others, he went on.

Belgian Ambassador Karl Van Den Bossche affirmed that his country wishes to strengthen cooperation with Vietnam in various fields, especially when the two countries are celebrating the 50 founding anniversary of the diplomatic relations.

The diplomat spoke highly of the Vietnamese Government’s approval of the National Power Development Plan VIII, saying that this is an important basis for businesses to conduct power projects.

For his part, Michel shared the vision, investment cooperation orientation, operations and future plans of John Cockerill Group in Vietnam, especially in terms of energy, hydrogen and manufacturing of hydrogen electrolyzers.

Michel said his working trip to Vietnam aims to promote the implementation of signed agreements and seek opportunities to expand investment in other fields in Vietnam.

PM Chinh welcomed and highly valued John Cockerill Group’s plan to expand investment in Vietnam.

He highlighted the great potential and advantages of Vietnam for developing renewable energy, especially wind and solar power, saying that Vietnam is encouraging investment in renewable energy in the spirit of “harmonious benefits and shared risks” among the State, businesses and people.

Vietnam prioritises the development of wind and solar power, and hydrogen, towards achieving the goal of net zero emissions by 2050 as committed at the 26th UN Climate Change Conference (COP 26) in Glasgow in late 2021, he said, noting that the National Power Development Plan VIII takes into account the possibility of electricity export in the trend of diversifying markets, products and supply chains.

The PM suggested the Belgian firm consider and soon make a decision to invest in long-term production in Vietnam in renewable energy, especially producing green hydrogen and biomass fuel; and strengthen cooperation with and support for Vietnam in perfecting policies, researching and applying science and technology, improving management capacity, and training human resources in this field.

He also urged the Belgian Ambassador and the John Cockerill’s CEO to promote cooperation with Vietnam in manufacturing chips, and promoting innovation in the Southeast Asian nation, and call on more Belgian firms to invest in Vietnam in emerging fields such as digital transformation, innovation, green transformation, and circular economy.

He hoped John Cockerill will soon set up an office and a research and training facility on hydrogen and renewable energy at the National Innovation Centre (NIC) in Hoa Lac hi-tech park in Hanoi./.

Source: Vietnam News Agency