A seminar on building capacity in preventing asbestos-related diseases in 2010 and following years was held in Hanoi on December 21.

The seminar was part of an asbestos-related disease prevention project jointly implemented by the National Institute of Labour Protection (NILP) under the Vietnam General Confederation of Labour and the Australian People for Health, Education and Development Abroad (APHEDA) organisation.

The project, which kicked off in February and finished in December this year, focused on studying the use of asbestos and diseases relating to the substance in Vietnam and educating labourers and businesses on the danger of asbestos. The project also set up a data centre on asbestos and asbestos-related diseases.

Participants at the seminar assessed the project’s outcomes and got updated on methods for early diagnosis of asbestos-related diseases and new materials that can replace asbestos.

According to NILP Director Le Van Trinh, Vietnam is one of the ten largest asbestos consumers in the world with more than 60,000 tonnes per year.

At present, Vietnam has nearly 40 asbestos cement (AC) roof sheet production facilities that consume around 90-95 percent of imported asbestos volume and produce close to 100 million sq.m of AC sheets per year./.