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VN, Netherlands convert challenges into cooperative opportunities

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VGP – Viet Nam and the Netherlands were urged to convert challenges in climate change and water management into cooperative opportunities

Deputy PM Trinh Dinh Dung made the point while co-chairing the 6th meeting of the Viet Nam-Netherlands intergovernmental committee on climate change adaptation and water management with Dutch Minister of Infrastructure and Environment Melanie Schultz on April 19 in The Hague, the Netherlands.  

Addressing the opening session, Deputy PM Dung expressed his joy at the growing bilateral relations in the past 44 years and noted the elevation of the ties to strategic partnership on climate change adaptation and water management.

The two countries have turned climate change challenges into cooperation opportunities in agriculture, water management and education-training, he added.

The Deputy PM took the occasion to thank the Dutch Government for helping Viet Nam’s Mekong Delta region design the path for sustainable development, better manage local natural resources, and reduce the region’s vulnerability.

Mr. Dung said that Viet Nam welcomes further financial and technical assistance from the Netherlands to address urgent issues, such as the building of a national database on environment and natural resources, the prevention of drought and saline intrusion, the management of water supply and drainage, the use of underground water and the erosion and sinking of river banks and coastal lines.

Minister Melanie Schultz hailed positive outcomes of joint projects between the two countries, particularly those carried out last year, which have contributed significantly to the mitigation of climate change impacts on the Mekong Delta.

Ms. Melanie Schultz underlined the importance of the Mekong Delta Plan (MDP), adding that the Netherlands stands ready to support and transfer technologies to help develop the region sustainably, and cooperate  with Viet Nam in tackling climate change challenges.

She also said that a number of Dutch companies, which are experienced in dredging and erosion prevention, and research institutes want to form partnerships with Viet Nam. 

On this occasion, the two sides reviewed the implementation of agreements reached at the previous meeting in March last year, and discussed in details orientations to carry out the MDP, the NICHE (Netherlands Initiative for Capacity Development in Higher Education) and ORIO (facility for infrastructure development) programs, and projects related to bilateral cooperation in business, trade and agriculture, and links between their localities.

The meeting agreed on further measures to promote sustainable development in connection with rural development in the region, and create opportunities for regional residents to access knowledge, experience and technologies. 

Regarding trade links, the two sides focused their discussion on the implementation of business and trade cooperation projects. 

Participants also hailed cooperation between Ho Chi Minh City and Rotterdam in adapting to climate change, as well as the partnership between Hanoi and Amsterdam in improving the environment in To Lich river, and in making a water resources planning for the Hong and Thai Binh rivers’ basin for 2020-2039 with a vision to 2050. 

The two sides agreed to discuss and promote new cooperation plans on the basis of Vietnam’s potential, and traditional strengths of the Netherlands. 

Deputy PM Trinh Dinh Dung and Minister Melanie Schultz signed the minutes of the meeting, agreeing that the 7th event will be held in Ha Noi next year./.

By Kim Anh