Canadian Ambassador to Vietnam Ping Kitnikone addressing the event

The event saw the participation of Le Cong Thanh, Vice-Minister of Natural Resources and Environment, Nguyen The Hung, Vice-Chairman of Hanoi City People’s Committee as well as representatives of twenty-two embassies and international organizations in Vietnam.

According to the Code of Conduct, international partners commit to assessing their current office practices related to one-time use plastic, and instituting operational changes to minimize their “plastic waste footprint”. All signatories also agreed to engage their staff in reducing plastic waste and encourage their partners and stakeholders to implement policies of throwing away no plastic waste.

By taking this joint action, international partners in Vietnam seek to act as change agents in reducing plastic pollution and raising awareness of its negative effects on humans, animals and the environment.

We have been working in the campaign to combat plastic pollution in Vietnam. As international partners, we work in Vietnam and have a social responsibility to reduce our plastic waste and usage in this beautiful country, and preserve the environment for future generations, said Ping Kitnikone, the Canadian Ambassador to Vietnam.

Signatories of the Code of Conduct

The signing ceremony is a highlight in the Plastic Pollution Advocacy Campaign, which is a joint campaign involving embassies and international partners working in support of Vietnam' sustainable development.

Following the signing ceremony, there was a roundtable discussion on plastic pollution, in which policy makers, business-leaders, scholars, and environmental activists will discuss the challenges in reducing plastic waste and recommend approaches to effectively address plastic pollution.

The campaign, under the auspices of the Canadian Embassy in Vietnam, seeks to raise awareness of the negative impacts of plastic pollution, while advocating for changes at the behavioral, institutional and policy levels that will reduce the amount of plastic waste generated in Vietnam.

Over the past months, twenty-two embassies and international partners have been actively engaged in this campaign. Another key element of this campaign has been a constructive dialogue with Vietnamese leaders to discuss policy options that will have long-term positive effects on plastic pollution in Vietnam. In addition, an online campaign #CountdownPlastic has been running on the social media platforms of the Code of Conduct signatories to call for public action on reducing single-use plastic in people’s ‘daily lives and workplaces’.

Plastic pollution is a pressing global issue with devastating ecological consequences and Vietnam is among the top five source countries for the eight million tons of plastic which are dumped in the world’s oceans each year.

Lam Anh