Sep 24, 2021 / 15:57

Vietnam's President meets series of US giants in New York

Vietnam and US firms have inked many deals worth dozens of billions of dollars during the Vietnamese President’s four-day visit.

Vietnam’s President Nguyen Xuan Phuc has worked with many big US firms during his four-day visit starting Sept 21 to attend the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA)’s 76th session in New York.

 Vietnam’s President Nguyen Xuan Phuc (2nd left) and Pfizer’s Senior Vice President Jonathan Selib in New York on Sept 23 (local time). Photos: Thong Nhat/ VNA

Talking with Pfizer Inc. executives at its headquarter in New York on Sept 23 (local time) is the latest among dozens of meetings that the president held on the sidelines of the UN debates, in which he had delivered a speech calling for the global unity against Covid-19.

Pfizer’s Senior Vice President Jonathan Selib pledged to provide enough 51 million doses it has pledged to supply Vietnam. Specifically, it will provide within this year 31 million doses for adults and 20 million others for children when it has sufficient data on efficacy and safety.

Jonathan Selib said the company will soon cut procedures to boost the delivery of three million doses resold by Poland.

Pfizer appreciated the establishment of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Southeast Asia Regional Office in Hanoi during US Vice President Kamala Harris’ visit in late August as signs of the US's trust in Vietnam’s capability in this drive.

The meeting with Pfizer took place one day after Phuc’s UNGA speech in which he emphasized that protecting lives becomes the first and foremost mission and vaccination will support that drive. He advocates the establishment of vaccine research and development centers and Vietnam is willing to join the network.

On Sept 22, Pfizer announced plans to expand its agreement with the US government by providing an additional 500 million doses at a not-for-profit price for donation to low- and lower-middle-income countries and the organizations that support them.

This expanded agreement brings the total number of doses to be supplied to the US government for donation to these countries to one billion.

Vietnam is one of the recipients of the WHO-led COVAX Facility that the US is the biggest donor with several billion dollars, not to mention hundreds of millions of vaccine doses. So far, Vietnam has received six million doses of US-donated vaccines.

 Vietnam's President Nguyen Xuan Phuc (R) and representatives of NextDecade.

Energy companies

During the visit there, Phuc worked with US leading energy developers, saying that Vietnam expected to import liquefied natural gas (LNG) to advance its energy transition and help balance trade with the US.

Working with representatives of Exxon Mobil Corporation (ExxonMobil), Phuc wanted the company to continue working with Vietnamese agencies to develop its projects as the operations of US oil and gas firms in Vietnam’s waters benefit both sides and contribute to maintaining peace, stability, and development in the region.

ExxonMobil is operating Ca Voi Xanh (Blue Whale), Vietnam’s largest offshore gas project discovered in 2011 with reserves of 150 billion cubic meters under the jurisdiction of the central city of Danang.

When receiving NextDecade, Phuc noted that Vietnam gives priority to green energy to both ensure its energy security and cut greenhouse gas emissions. He appreciated the company’s expansion in Vietnam to help local partners closely follow the country’s Power Development Plan VIII (PDP8) for 2021-2030 and vision to 2045.

In the meeting with representatives of BlackRock, Inc., one of the global investment managers, Phuc welcomed the company’s investment in energy in Vietnam and asked it to work with Binh Son Refining and Petrochemical JSC to proceed with the plans.

 Vietnam's President Nguyen Xuan Phuc (R) and President and CEO of the US-ASEAN Business Council (USABC) Ted Osius in New York.  

During Phuc’s visit, Hanoi-based T&T Group and UPC Renewables signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on developing renewable energy in Vietnam. The deal enables the two firms to invest approximately US$2.5 billion in solar, onshore, and nearshore wind farms with a total capacity of 1.5 gigawatts (GW) in the provinces of Ninh Thuan, Dak Nong, Ben Tre, and Bac Lieu.

Chan May LNG (CML) and General Electric (GE) signed a deal worth US$2.4 billion to use GE turbines and generators as well as to develop Chan May LNG project with a capacity of 4.8 GW in Thua Thien-Hue province.

Meanwhile, a deal between CML and Excelerate Energy worth US$800 million to develop the same project was also reached.

AES Corp and PetroVietnam Gas inked an agreement to set up LNG Son My joint venture to operate an LNG terminal in Vietnam. The JV is part of a US$1.3-billion LNG-to-power complex in the central province of Binh Thuan.

On this occasion, Vingroup and Google Cloud signed a deal in New York City to aim at seeing the Vietnamese corporation draw upon the cloud vendor’s technology to support its ongoing digitization strategy.

“Google Cloud is uniquely positioned to help Vingroup drive its growth strategy with our innovative and trusted industry solutions and vertical expertise,” said Thomas Kurian, Google Cloud CEO. “This MoU with Google Cloud builds on our successful ongoing relationship with Google,” said Vingroup vice chairman and CEO Nguyen Viet Quang.

In addition, the Vietnamese president attended a virtual meeting with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva. He also met with President and CEO of the US-ASEAN Business Council (USABC) Ted Osius and CEOs and executives of Warburg Pincus, CFM International, Cantor Fitzgerald, Weidner Asset Management Steelman Partners, The DeLong, Valero, and AGP.