Porto joins world leaders in Vietnam to discuss sustainable development and green economy

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The Municipality of Porto was invited to share experiences and discuss strategies around the green economy during the Ho Chi Minh City Economic Forum, in Vietnam. The councillor for Economy, Employment and Entrepreneurship, Ricardo Valente, participated in the “CEO 100 Tea Connect” conference, where he stated that the green economy was not only an ethical choice, but a “strategic imperative that can boost profit and long-term success term”.

In the initiative, which brings together big companies and organizations from around the world in sharing advice and encouraging cooperation and investment, the councillor said he believes that “an approach focused on employment, entrepreneurship, and in economy can lead to a more sustainable and resilient urban environment while promoting economic growth”.

The focus on training and educational programs, as well as urban agriculture, support for entrepreneurship linked to the circular economy, but also intervention on tax policies are, for Ricardo Valente, key points to promote this growth.

At the welcoming session, the president of Ho Chi Minh People’s Committee, Phan Van Mai, assured that the city is determined to develop a green development strategy, reinforcing the commitment to allocate the necessary resources to pursue the goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2050.

The participation of the Economy councillor in “CEO 100 Tea Connect” was highlighted by Tiền Phong. The Vietnamese daily reports that Ricardo Valente said that, in his city, “from the first grade on, students are taught to adapt to awareness of the importance of ecological principles and green growth”. “Vietnam is an agricultural country, suitable for green development in buildings and green spaces in the core of the city”, the newspaper quotes.

The councillor also added, one can read in the Tiền Phong, the idea that “local governments are the biggest consumers in society and, therefore, should be pioneers in the use of green products, creating incentives for companies to produce”. “If the State does not participate in this process of green consumption, it will not be able to create motivation for society”, underscores Ricardo Valente.

On the sidelines of the Ho Chi Minh City Economic Forum, the Economy councillor was received by one of the vice-chairmen of the Vietnamese city, Ngo Minh Chau. The meeting made it possible to address the main subjects covered in the Cooperation Agreement signed between both cities last July, especially the subjects linked to urban rehabilitation, environment, and technology.

Ngo Minh Chau thanked Porto for its willingness to share with the Vietnamese authorities some of the city’s know how and some of the strategies used in attracting investment and, above all, foreign investment, in the supporting startups, in the circular economy and in the commitment to carbon neutrality.

In his turn, Ricardo Valente highlighted the historical relationship between both countries, referring to Portugal as the gateway to the European and Portuguese-speaking market and the need to promote a truly effective students exchange at an academic level.

Remember that Porto and Ho Chi Minh have been strengthening relations for a long time. The last testimony of this relationship was the visit of a delegation from that Vietnamese city, led by its vice-president, Duong Anh Duc, to the Invicta on the occasion of the "Vietnam Ho Chi Minh City Festival in Porto", within the scope of establishment and promoting cultural, economic, educational and tourism relationship between both cities.

The bridge between Porto and Ho Chi Minh began to work when, in October of the past year, the Vietnamese ambassador to Portugal was received by the Mayor of Porto in the Council Chambers. At that moment, Dinh Toan highlighted the dynamism of the city of Porto and the importance of sharing experiences and economic ambitions in order to create opportunities for both countries, particularly in the areas of technology, tourism, and sustainable development.