Vietnam, with its dynamic growth and increasing demand for effective energy management, urban infrastructure and electronic traffic systems, is a potential partner for Finland in the field of smart city building, Finnish Minister of Economic Affairs Jan Vapaavuori has said.

In a workshop in Ho Chi Minh City on October 21, the official pointed to the flipside of Vietnam’s progressing development, namely an array of challenges posed by rapid urbanisation, such as infrastructure overloading, environmental pollution, public safety, and governmental reform.

Finland is willing to share its expertise and technologies, and act as a trustworthy partner for the Southeast Asian country, he added.

Jan Vapaavuori pointed out that Finnish and Vietnamese companies have cooperated in the fields of water management and road design, a basis for them to expand their partnership to the application of green technology, digital technology, and education in order to build smart cities in Vietnam.

Finnish experts said urbanisation has helped lift millions of people out of poverty, yet it also caused environmental pollution, traffic congestion and a decline in living space. Building smart cities is an urgent and suitable solution to these problems.

Vice Chairman of HCM City’s People’s Committee Le Manh Ha said as a major Vietnamese city, the locality needs to come up with solutions to a range of issues. In response, HCM City is learning from Finland’s experience and technologies in an effort to manage water resources, waste and other urban matters effectively.

During the meeting, Vietnamese and Finnish experts and businesses discussed smart cities, the role of education in development, sustainable planning, and opportunities and challenges of developing smart cities.-VNA