Conference “Just Energy Transition = Job Accelerator for Viet Nam? 

German-Vietnamese perspectives on employment and skills needs”

On September 20, 2023, the conference “Just Energy Transition = Job Accelerator for Viet Nam? German-Vietnamese perspectives on employment and skills needs” is held by the German Embassy in Hanoi. The conference aims to analyze and present the significant potential that energy transition will bring up to Vietnamese economic and labor market growth. Just energy transition needs to incorporate social, cultural, environmental, economic, and identity-related issues as well as to ensure no one is left behind.

The event attracted the participation of nearly 200 delegates and over 300 others joining online, representing a broad range of related sector: National Assembly, Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs, Ministry of Industry and Trade, Electricity Vietnam, Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Vietnam Academy of Social Sciences, German Institute for Employment Research, Institute for Sustainable Futures – University of Technology Sydney and private sectors.

In his opening speech, Dr. Guido Hildner, Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany emphasizes: “I want to congratulate the government of Viet Nam for the ambitious target of achieving carbon neutrality by 2050 and the commitment to a comprehensive Just Energy Transition Partnership (JETP) which has been signed in December last year by Viet Nam and the G7 plus Members. Germany is a long standing and reliable Partner of Viet Nam. Our first joint project in the field of renewable energies started in 2009. Since then our cooperation has continuously grown and comprises currently an overall portfolio of ongoing and planned projects of more than 1 billion Euro. During this conference, we also want to share our own experiences: In Germany the number of employees in occupations with green skills has increased by 56.7% to 5 million from 2012 to 2020. This shows that the energy transition is a complex and demanding process but that there are also huge opportunities for the benefit of the people and the economy.

In the plenary session, international experts shared the stories of the world’s energy transition, highlighting successful mechanisms as well as clarifying the importance of nurturing the workforce, building mechanisms and policies with a long-term vision to promote the development of new jobs and indirect jobs related to the energy transformation.

H.E. Nguyễn Thị Hà, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs acknowledges the importance of fostering and upgrading labour skills and claims that this is a necessary solution to support workers to keep their occupations or change jobs, thereby maintaining livelihoods and stabilizing their life during the energy transition process. She hopes that experts and delegates will share experiences in unlocking the potential of energy transition, and propose specific solutions related to employment and skills training for workers to serve the goal of a just energy transition.

The conference included 05 breakout sessions with the following topics: Wind energy, Solar energy, Women in Energy, Energy Efficiency and E-mobility. Representatives from the public and private sector discuss and identify breakthrough solutions for the just energy transition in Viet Nam. All experts confirm the urgency of promoting skills development and employment promotion measures to realize employment potential. At the same time, it is necessary to pay attention to gender equality and promote the role of women in the energy transition process.

H.E. Tạ Đình Thi, Vice Chairman, Committee on Science, Technology and Environment of the National Assembly affirms “Viet Nam is committed to achieving carbon neutrality by 2050 and pursuing a just energy transition. Viet Nam is aware of the importance of developing necessary skills and is willing to learn from international examples. Vietnam highly appreciates the German-Vietnamese cooperation and believes that this relationship will contribute to a just energy transition and a green future for Viet Nam”

The conference expects to create a platform which brings the topic Energy Transition associated with Job Transition closer to the public and more importantly, Viet Nam can make the right and appropriate decisions to transition the energy system in a just and sustainable way.

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