In Vietnam, safety of drinking water is a major concern. As raw water sources are easily polluted by e.g. agriculture and industry, water utilities need reliable solutions for monitoring water quality. In addition, poorly constructed distribution networks may result into contamination and threaten the health of customers, even in major cities. Just this October, over 250 000 households in Hanoi were affected by contamination of tap water due to oil spillage.
Finnish Water Forum (FWF) and Vietnam Water Supply and Sewerage Association (VWSA) organized a seminar for capacity building in water quality monitoring in Vietnam in November. The event was organized as a part of VEMIDI project by FWF, Finnish Environment Institute SYKE and South-Eastern Finland University of Applied Sciences XAMK (see more below).
Over 80 representatives from both Finnish and Vietnamese water utilities, companies, authorities and research institutes participated the seminar. Presentations were held by representatives from Saigon Water Company, Thua Thien Hue Water Company, Hai Duong Water Company, VUCICO from Vietnamese side and Finnish Environment Institute, Masinotek Ltd and Solid Water Ltd from Finnish side. Welcoming speeches were held by the Ambassador of Finland in Vietnam, Mr. Kari Kahiluoto, and the Vice Chairman of VWSA, Dr. Nguyen Hong Tien.
Some water utilities in Vietnam already have advanced solutions in use for monitoring their raw water quality. For example, in Saigon Water Company organic pollutants are already monitored online based on total organic carbon (TOC). Some utilities use also fish pools as an indicator for water safety. Still, cost-effective solutions are needed to successfully monitor the water quality at small- and medium-sized water utilities.
Finnish professionals highlighted especially the role of quality assurance and integration of different data sources, which are both crucial steps when applying new monitoring technologies. Remote real-time monitoring can be a cost-effective manner to yield more data and information of environmental conditions. However, proper measures are required for verifying the data quality. Experiences from Finland were considered to be very beneficial and of high interest for Vietnamese water utilities. Further cooperation is planned between several different companies and organizations.
Finnish companies present at VietWater exhibition
FWF and our members promoted Finnish water sector expertise also at VietWater Expo in HCMC. Exhibition visitors include a lot of decision-makers from Vietnamese water sector, but also from surrounding countries. This was the seventh time FWF organized a joint booth for Finnish water sector companies at VietWater.
Finnish Pavilion at the exhibition provided a platform for Finnish companies to promote their solutions and find new partners in the market. This year’s expo provided the companies a lot of new business opportunities in Vietnamese and South-East Asian market.
FWF activities in Vietnam
FWF has a cooperation project in Vietnam with VWSA called “Developing Water Supply and Sanitation sector in Vietnam through New Partnerships”.
Activities of the project involve experience sharing, capacity building and partnership development between both public and private water sector organizations. The project began in June 2017 and will continue until June 2020. The project is supported by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland.
Digitalization of water resources monitoring -project (VEMIDI)
VEMIDI project is one of the blue bioeconomy key government projects facilitated by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry. Objective of the project is to develop a platform for unified real-time environmental monitoring data with quality assurance. With the help of this platform, new monitoring technologies are demonstrated. Role of FWF in the project is to identify suitable SME’s to participate in the project and develop new business opportunities for the presented solutions.
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