Visit of Vietnam Delegation to Edinburgh
Under the title of Exploring Opportunities In Vietnam, a delegation of senior businessman and civil servants visited Edinburgh as guests of the Asia Scotland Institute on July 8th and 9th. The delegation was led by HE Madam Ho Thi Kim Thoa, Vice Minister for Trade, accompanied by the Vietnamese Ambassador to the UK, HE Nguyen van Thao and others.
This visit arose directly from the Building Bridges conference , which we held earlier this year and also attended by representatives from Vietnam and other countries who were encouraged to follow up by building connections with Scotland.
In an intense morning of meetings held at the Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation, sponsors of the event, a number of different business sectors were explored with presentations from both the Scottish and Vietnamese sides. Infrastructure, Food and Drink, Tourism, Textiles, Agriculture and especially fish farming, Environmental and Travel and Tourism were all explored. Vietnam Airlines exchanged views with Edinburgh Airport and discussions also covered the topics of education and visas.
Diane Duncan, Head of Low Carbon and Environmental Clean Technologies at HIE demonstrated how Scotland’s North has developed over the past generation, whilst Siobhan Mackenzie, Dawnfresh, and Energy North provided a taste of what Scotland had to offer.
Ed Craig, Head of Enterprise & Innovation at the Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation (ECCI), delivered an inspirational presentation on the centre’s proud opening of HKCCI in the world renowned Science Park in Hong Kong (http://www.hkstp.org/en-US/News-Media-Events/Events- Seminars/2015/Scottish_delegation.aspx).
Following the conference, the participants visited the Dovecot Studio see examples of weaving in progress.
On the second day of their visit, delegates were taken to Dryden Aqua in Bonnyrigg to learn of ground-breaking progress in water purification, Diageo’s Glenkinchie Distillery in Pencaitland and, finally the new Forth Road Bridge being constructed by Arup.
Writing after the event, Nguyen Thi Hong Thuy said “Thank you so much for your kind support and excellent arrangements for our event. We are really appreciated. Thank you also for wonderful field trips to various companies on the last Thursday and for lovely photos as well. I hope that we could have opportunities for working more in the future, especially in organising more sector specific events for companies from both sides.”
We certainly hope that this is the case and that, building on the discussions and meetings, some specific benefits will flow to both countries.