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The 11th Eco-products International Fair (EPIF) 2017 formally opened on 11 May 2017 at the Saigon Exhibition & Convention Center in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, with a ribbon cutting by dignitaries including Vice Minister Trần Việt Thanh of Vietnam’s Ministry of Science and Technology, Vice Minister Võ Tuấn Nhân of Vietnam’s Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Asian Productivity Organization (APO) Secretary-General Dr. Santhi Kanoktanaporn, and Green Productivity Advisory Committee (GPAC) Chairperson Hajime Bada, Honorary Adviser, JFE Holdings Inc.
Also present during the opening ceremony were Ho Chi Minh City Vice Chairman Le Thanh Liem, Busan City Deputy Director General Park Nam Sik, Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry Vice-Executive President Hoang Quang Phong, and GPAC Vice Chairpersons Prof. Ryoichi Yamamoto, Dr. Yoshinori Takema, Shunichi Matsumura, and Yukio Yanase.
The EPIF 2017 is organized by the APO, Vietnam National Productivity Institute, Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and Vietnam Environment Administration and will run until 13 May. It is supported by the Vietnamese Ministry of Science & Technology and Ministry of Natural Resources & Environment.
Welcoming dignitaries and delegates to the EPIF 2017, Vice Minister of Science and Technology Trần Việt Thanh observed that sustainable development was one of the fundamental criteria in reforming the model of economic growth as well as the most significant goal for Vietnam. “With the theme Green Technologies and Products: Actions for the Future, the EPIF 2017 is an important step toward the development of Vietnam’s economy and an important event to disseminate and raise community awareness of productivity and sustainable development through producing and consuming eco-friendly products, services, and technologies,” he said.
Speaking at the Opening Ceremony of the EPIF, APO Secretary-General Dr. Santhi Kanoktanaporn declared that with rapid changes around the world in various spheres, the APO’s next step would be to promote Sustainable Productivity as a key element of its activities. “Sustainable Productivity growth in today’s rapidly changing world is a complex issue, cutting across multiple domains including government policies and issues related to industry, agriculture, climate change, and others. We are calling for concerted efforts in all spheres to move toward a sustainable future,” he told delegates.
In his address at the EPIF Opening Ceremony, GPAC Chairperson Hajime Bada, Honorary Adviser, JFE Holdings Inc., pointed out that with APO member countries continuing to experience rapid economic growth, the burden on the environment had increased due to greater energy use. “This is now a major problem and I hope that this EPIF, which is showcasing the world’s best and latest environmental technologies, will help change perceptions of the Paris Agreement so that it is viewed not as a constraint but as an opportunity for new contributions to sustainable development,” he remarked.
The three-day EPIF promotes awareness of sustainable development through the production and consumption of eco-friendly products, services, and technologies. The theme Green Technologies and Products: Action for the Future focuses on future-proofing productivity efforts while achieving sustainable industrial development and growth in APO member countries.
The EPIF is one of the largest international environmental exhibitions in Asia, and this is the second time for Vietnam to host the event. Among the 174 exhibitors, companies from Germany, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Thailand, and Vietnam are introducing their latest environmentally friendly equipment, products, and services. Industry players can explore business collaborations, investment cooperation, trade promotion, and technology transfers. The fair is also a good opportunity for local counterparts to build national strategies, identify needs, and promote activities for green growth in Vietnam.