However, a recent report released by the World Bank’s (WB) Hanoi office stresses that a green economy does not necessarily slow down economic growth. The secret to success, the report explains, is changing infrastructure to a greener model as the economy matures. It is only then that targets, subsidies and levies should be implemented.
As Marianne Fay, Chief Economist of the Sustainable Development Network of the WB explained, the growth of a green economy will result in the loss of numerous traditional jobs, which could be deemed as devastating by local communities, especially the poor. Yet, the move towards greener methods and technologies will create new pockets of jobs and professions.
Fay cited the growth of the renewable energy market in Germany as a successful model, which produced more than 400,000 new jobs throughout the country.
Bakhodir Burkhanov, an official of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Vietnam, recently remarked that a handful of Vietnamese businesses in the steel, cement, and tourism industries are already adapting traditional processes towards greener methods.
He noted that these business initiatives should be nourished and expanded through suitable planning.
Pham Hoang Mai, an official from the Ministry of Planning and Investment, developed Burkhanov’s point further, claiming that the government should formulate policies to encourage the involvement of the private sector in Vietnam’s green strategy.
The shortage of capital and the resistance to a shift in job structure, however, are impeding the implementation of the country’s green growth, Mai added. He predicts that Vietnam’s green growth strategy will be unique to the country, and one that mirrors the current roadmap for economic development.
Victoria Kwakwa, WB Country Director for Vietnam, echoed Mai, saying that the Southeast Asian country should define different priorities for different points in time that complement its more concrete policies.