Jun 19, 2018 / 18:51

Vietnam hosts ASEM conference on climate change response

The Hanoitimes - An Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) Forum on dealing with climate change effects started in Vietnam`s southern province of Can Tho on June 19.

The Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) Forum on "Working together to respond climate change to achieve sustainable development goals - future directions" on June 19 in Can Tho city is jointly organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA), the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment and the Can Tho People’s Committee.
The conference was aimed at implementing the initiative of Viet Nam adopted at the 13th ASEM Foreign Ministers Meeting in Nisseh, Myanmar, in November 2017. In particular, the initiative was 7 ASEM members include Australia, Belgium, Denmark, Italy, Finland, the Netherlands and Myanmar.
 
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The opening ceremony saw the attendance of Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh and leaders of ministries, committees, central branches, leaders of provinces, cities, departments in the Mekong Delta region and Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Hai Phong and Da Nang.
Besides, there have been more than 200 delegates, including 53 senior ASEM members, leaders from many international and regional organizations such as the Asia-Pacific Economic and Social Commission, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI), the World Bank, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) European Business Forum (EuroCham), ASEAN Secretariat.
According to Nguyen Minh Hang, Deputy Director-General of the Department of Multilateral Economic Cooperation under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and head of the Vietnamese ASEM senior official meeting (SOM), the conference is an initiative of Vietnam which was approved at the 13th ASEM Ministerial Meeting last November in Myanmar and won support and sponsorship from many countries, including Australia, Denmark, Myanmar, Finland, the Netherlands and Italy.
The conference is one of the most important inter-regional events on climate change and the only one of ASEM 2018 hosted by Vietnam. It is also the first ASEM initiative in its third decade of cooperation on climate change response toward sustainability.
The event’s four plenary meetings focus on discussions on development in the context of climate change, building capacity to adapt to climate change, actions in response to climate change which feature the role of relevant parties, and shaping the future which promotes Asia-Europe climate partnership for sustainable development.
Vietnam is assessed as one of the countries hardest hit by climate change. Especially, the Mekong Delta region is one of the three deltas in the world most vulnerable to sea level rise, together with the Nile River Delta in Egypt and the Ganges River Delta in Bangladesh.
Vietnam joined the forum in 1996. The country organized the 5th ASEM Summit in 2004, and economic ministers’ meeting (2001), information-technology ministers’ meeting (2006), foreign and education ministers’ meetings (2009) and labor ministers’ meeting (2012).
In 2017, Vietnam carried out the Prime Minister’s initiative at the 11th ASEM Summit in Mongolia in July 2016 by hosting the ASEM conference on innovative education and human resources building for sustainable development in Hue city on March. The country chaired the 37th meeting of the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF) Board of Governors.
Being one of the countries most affected by climate change and sea level rise, Vietnam is at the forefront of implementing international climate agreements under the United Nations Framework Convention on climate change, especially the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement.