HO CHI MINH CITY – A digital and green economic partnership between Vietnam and Singapore is on the cards, continued State visit by President Halimah Yacob to Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City this week.
Speaking to the media on Thursday at the end of her five-day visit, Ms Halimah said Vietnamese Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh suggested the idea when they met earlier in the week. She applauded the suggestion and said both parties would act on it.
Halimah also expressed hope that the two countries would be able to develop an ASEAN power grid, citing Vietnam’s 3,260 km long coastline as having great potential for solar and wind power generation.
“It will certainly contribute to our goal of zero emissions because we will have more renewable energy for our use. Not just for our use, if there is an excess, then it goes through the ASEAN region and helps to strengthen ASEAN solidarity,” she said, noting that Singapore and Vietnam have pledged to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050.
Asked about the timeline for these goals, Ms. Halimah urged patience as the goals require feasibility reports and further discussion, and can take years to materialize.
“It’s not something that’s going to happen overnight. It will take time, but the momentum has to be there,” she said, adding that a strong policy and the will to achieve the goals are needed.
“For ASEAN, we need to have something concrete to work on, and what could be more neutral and concrete than having economic initiatives like this, which can really improve people’s lives,” he said. she said, referring to the ASEAN power grid.
In June, Singapore started importing renewable energy from Laos via Thailand and Malaysia. The move marked the first multilateral cross-border electricity trade involving four ASEAN countries and the first import of renewable energy to Singapore.
Singapore’s Power Market Authority and Keppel, Laos Ministry of Energy and Mines and Laos Electricity then said the project was a step forward in the development of a power grid wider ASEAN.
Green initiatives and developments were a hot topic during the state visit, Madam Halimah’s first to Vietnam as president.
She witnessed the signing of four agreements, two of which focused on trade in renewable energy and carbon credits. On Wednesday, she visited a showcase of 10 Singaporean companies that are using innovative green products and technologies as part of their environmental, social and governance efforts.
Reflecting on her state visit, Ms. Halimah said it was wonderful to meet overseas Singaporeans living and working in Vietnam, and reiterated her call to get involved in Exercise Forward Singapore to shape and strengthen the social pact of the Republic.