It is necessary to change plastics production and use patterns towards sustainability: Deputy PM

Wednesday, 2020-12-23 16:46:49
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Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung speaks at the launch ceremony. (Photo: VGP)
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NDO – It is time to take drastic and effective action together to change traditional plastic production and use patterns towards being sustainable and eco-friendly, Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung has said.

Deputy PM Dung made the statement at a ceremony held by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MONRE), the World Economic Forum (WEF) and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) in Hanoi on December 23 to launch the Vietnam National Plastic Action Partnership (NPAP).

NPAP is a partnership between the Government of Vietnam, represented by MONRE, and the Global Plastics Action Partnership (GPAP), a platform for entities of the WEF to realise commitments in reducing plastic pollution and developing the circular economy.

The NPAP launch has affirmed Vietnam’s strategy of developing the economy in parallel with protecting the environment and ecosystem, with a standpoint of not sacrificing the environment for economic growth, Deputy PM Dung said.

He hailed the importance of plastics in production and daily life, but noted that the unsustainable production and use of plastic products, especially single-use ones, has caused serious problems for the environment and ecosystems. Plastic waste is currently considered a “red alarm” and an urgent issue in the ASEAN region in particular and the world in general.

According to the Deputy PM, right from 2018, in response to the UN initiative “Addressing plastic and nylon pollution”, the Government of Vietnam has actively participated in and proactively proposed global and regional cooperation mechanisms on plastic waste reduction in many forums and international cooperation mechanisms such as the G7 Summit 2018 in Canada, the World Economic Forum on ASEAN 2018 in Vietnam and the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2019 in Davos.

In addition, Vietnam has taken the lead in implementing many strong action programmes to tackle plastic waste pollution, which have been actively responded to by all strata of people in the society, he said.

In particular, the National Assembly of Vietnam recently adopted the revised Law on Environmental Protection with additional regulations on minimising, reusing, recycling and disposing plastic waste; restricting the use of single-use plastics and undegradable nylon bags; and encouraging the production of environmentally friendly products to replace traditional plastic products, he added.

Deputy PM Trinh Dinh Dung, leaders of the MONRE and representatives of partners pose together at the event. (Photo: VGP)

Deputy PM Dung highly lauded MONRE-WEF active coordination to implement the NPAP initiative, voicing his belief that the programme would gather together management agencies, businesses and the community at large in the effective management and treatment of plastic waste, thereby contributing to the implementation of ASEAN's commitments on environmental protection.

He asked the MONRE to continue working closely and effectively with the WEF, countries and international organisations to effectively implement the NPAP and other plastic waste reduction plans.

The Vietnamese Government will create favourable conditions for the NPAP to be successfully implemented, becoming a typical model of sustainability in management and use of plastics, he said, affirming that Vietnam will act strongly and responsibly in global and regional efforts to reduce plastic waste.

With the launch of the NPAP, Vietnam has officially become one of the first three countries in the world (along with Indonesia and Ghana) to apply a specific model of multi-subject cooperation in stepping up action on plastic waste.

Addressing the event, Kristin Hughes, Director of the GPAP and member of WEF Executive Committee, expressed her hopes that the lessons from the experience and successes of the NPAP would provide useful information and catalyse similar initiatives in other countries in the Asia-Pacific region.