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UNIDO launches landmark Eco-Industrial Park project in Viet Nam

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unido inception_ws_panelHa Noi, 17 Oct 2014 - UNIDO has kicked-off a landmark three-year project to help transform industrial zones into more environmentally friendly and sustainable networks to further meet Viet Nam's green growth ambitions.

The Prime Minister-approved project "Implementation of Eco-Industrial Park Initiative for Sustainable Industrial Zones in Viet Nam", launched on 17 October in Ha Noi with the Ministry of Planning and Investment, will convert such zones (IZs) into "eco-industrial zones" (EIZ) through the transfer, application and dissemination of technologies and cleaner production methods to minimize hazardous waste, greenhouse gas emissions and water pollutants and properly manage chemicals.

The USD$53 million project, with USD$4.55 million in non-refundable aid from the Global Environment Fund (GEF), Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) and UNIDO, will see the pilot model implemented in Can Tho, Da Nang, Ha Noi and Ninh Binh.

While IZs in these selected provinces and Viet Nam in general have positively contributed to the nation's socio-economic development, their rapid growth has impacted on the environment and surrounding communities which demand their transformation into EIZs in keeping with the National Strategy on Green Growth.

"Environment challenges faced by industrial zones in Viet Nam are many and complex. These challenges start from lack of investment, supply and use of resources, handling of different types of solid waste, air emissions and effluents discharges," said Patrick Gilabert, UNIDO Representative in Viet Nam.

He said the project was designed to leave a long-term legacy by promoting inclusive and sustainable industrial production practices in IZs through company cooperation in the areas of improved energy systems, waste management, reduced water flows, industrial zone management and integration into the host community.

"This is a monumental event that highlights the close partnership between Viet Nam and its donors towards the sustainability of industrial park development," said Nguyen The Phuong, Vice Minister of the Ministry of Planning and Investment.

The project is broken down into six main components and will deliver policies and strengthen EIZ planning and management, increase State agencies' technical competence in the transfer of technologies and application of clean and low-carbon technologies as well as safe and resource-efficient production methods. Importantly, it will identify at least 45 potential IZ enterprises Can Tho, Da Nang and Ninh Binh to participate in applying clean and resource-efficient technologies as well as piloting conversion to EIZs.

Participating enterprises in the Khanh Phu (Ninh Binh), Hoa Khanh (Da Nang), Tra Noc 1&2 (Can Tho) EZs will receive training on cleaner production and consultative support on technology transfer to use resources and energy efficiently and reduce the discharge of waste into the environment following a comprehensive cycle including preparation of loan applications, supporting loans with preferential interest rates and potential reimbursement of parts of loan from SECO's Green Credit Fund.

Further tangible project impacts will be made with reductions of 182,000 tons/year in greenhouse gas emissions and a 6 million m3/year in waste water to ensure the quality of waste water reaches international standards.

"We wish to improve our management skills and get technical support to better monitor and evaluate the impacts of IZs on the environment, thereby offering solutions to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of the IZs," said Vui Hoai Chuong, Deputy General Director from Ninh Binh IZ Management Board.

UNIDO and the MPI expect to replicate the EIZ model throughout the country once the pilot phase is completed. This project is one of the important projects demonstrating UNIDO's Lima Declaration on its new strategic vision to support its member countries including Viet Nam towards Inclusive and Sustainable Industrial Development (ISID) (see link: http://www.unido.org/en/who-we-are/structure/directorgeneral/vision.html).

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