Experts have underlined the need to develop the environment industry in order to better control pollution and repairing environmental degradation in the country at a recent workshop-and-fair on environmental industrial products in Hanoi.

A representative from the Ministry of Industry and Trade's Department of Science and Technology said the environment industry has taken shaped in the country five years after the Prime Minister’s approval of a project on the environment industry to 2015, with a vision to 2025.

The industry has met part of the demand regarding waste treatment and protection of land and water environment, he said, stressing that the rising pressure in environmental protection requires a greater involvement of the private sector in developing environmental technologies and equipment as well as offering related services.

Surveys conducted by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment show the country’s 16 economic sectors need an estimated 7.6 billion USD in investment in environmental protection. However, only a small number of businesses, mostly small-and medium-sized enterprises, have registered to supply urban and industrial waste water treatment services.

Only 6 out of 63 provinces and cities nationwide have waste water treatment plants, and just 105 among 283 operational industrial parks across the country have concentrated waste-water treatment plants, which are able to meet around 34 percent of the real demand.

About 1.5 billion cu.m of untreated waste water, most from urban areas and industrial parks, are directly discharged into the environment each year, said Dr. Do Huu Hao, Chairman of the Vietnam Environment Industry Association.

He added that urban areas discharge about 30,000 tonnes of solid waste every day but only 83 percent of which are collected and treated. The rate is just 50-60 percent for rural areas, which generate a combined 5,000 tonnes a day. The most common treatment method is burying in duping sites, with 85 percent of the total solid waste being disposed this way.

The workshop also provided a venue for participating enterprises to introduce their latest products and technologies in the field.-VNA