Hanoi (VNA) – Vice President Dang Thi Ngoc Thinh delivered a speech at the opening ceremony of the 2018 Global Summit of Women in Sydney, Australia, on April 26, highlighting women’s role in promoting global governance, inclusive and sustainable development and building economies of shared values.
Following is the full text of the speech of Vice President Dang Thi Ngoc Thinh at Global Summit of Women.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am delighted to attend the 2018 Global Summit of Women with the delegation of female leaders and businesswomen. First of all, on behalf of the Vietnamese delegation, I would like to thank the host country of Australia for your gracious hospitality and warm reception extended to the delegates attending the Summit, including our delegation. Nearly 80 members of our delegation would like to send our best regards and wish of good health to all of you.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The Global Summit of Women, throughout its three decades of history, has proven its tremendous vitality. The Summit has become a gathering of prominent women including leaders, former leaders of states and enterprises, those who have worked actively for the progress of women all over the world, all working towards the aim of enhancing women’s role and empowerment, expanding women’s economic opportunities, thus contributing to national development and the global economy. The Summit also serves as a bridge between socio-economic policy makers, and an incubator of ideas and initiatives for economic cooperation and networking among businesswomen.
One of the key factors for the success of the Summit is that our annual topics are all updated, linked with the ongoing situations in the world, they are both practical, encouraging us to think of new ideas, new inspirations to expand opportunities and address challenges faced by women, such as “Women: Creating New Economies”, “Women: Building and Inclusive Economy in the Digital Age”, and “Womenomics”.
This year’s theme “Creating Economies of Shared Value” is not only a logical extension of previous themes, but also of particular significance in our present context. Globalisation and robust developments in science and technology have not always been well received. There have been much doubts in the wake of the anti-globalisation movement, inward-looking policies, populism, and even trade wars. Perhaps not a few businesses present here today have already suffered considerably from the impacts of these phenomena.
I fully agree with Mr. Kofi Annan, the former UN Secretary General, who said that “arguing against globalisation is like arguing against the laws of gravity”. Globalisation and economic integration are clearly an irreversible trend which can generate huge opportunities and help businesses and nations to maximise their advantages in the global value chain. We are not ignorant of the multi-dimensional challenges posed by globalisation and international integration. As Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said, “free trade is the key, protectionism is not a ladder to get you out of a low growth trap, it is a shovel to dig it a lot deeper”.
It was with the desire to strengthen connectivity and cooperation for mutual benefits that the 2017 APEC Summit in Vietnam chose the theme of “Creating new dynamism, fostering a shared future”and the four key priorities: “promoting sustainable, innovative and inclusive growth”, “deepening regional economic integration”, “strengthening MSMEs’competitiveness and innovation in the digital age”, and “enhancing food security and sustainable agriculture in response to climate change”.
The Summit had indeed surpassed our expectations. Particularly, in APEC Economic Leaders’ Week, over 4000 businesses participated in APEC, demonstrating the spirit of business and start-up, innovation, reaffirming the role of APEC as a forum for people and businesses, at the same time opening up new prospects for investment, trade and business growth for the Asia-Pacific region and Vietnam. In addition, in order to enhance the role of women in the economic field, within APEC 2017, we had put in place many activities, including "APEC Women and the Economic Forum", which received strong support from APEC members with the initiative on APEC gender inclusion guidelines.
It is in the same spirit that a month ago, in this very city, at the ASEAN - Australia Special Summit, the leaders of ASEAN and Australian reaffirmed their determination to strengthen economic cooperation and integration, including within the frameworks of multilateral economic institutions, as well as to promote business connectivity so as to fully harness the advantages of globalisation and trade liberalisation. It is to my knowledge that the Australian Government, as well as other Governments whose countries are represented here, have been making effort to support regional and global integration mechanisms, considering them a driver of growth and employment generation, and a factor allowing global consumers access to the best goods and services at the most reasonable prices.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Women can play a key role in promoting global governance, inclusive and sustainable development and building economies of shared values. The World Economic Forum (WEF) stated that greater women’s participation in economic activities enables faster and more sustainable growth. This also explains why ensuring gender equality and women’s economic empowerment is one of the priorities of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the development strategies of various countries. I wish to learn from your experience in generating economic opportunities for women and maximising their role in the economy.
Increasing women’s role in the economy is always a priority of Vietnam’s development policies. Currently, women account for 48 percent of the labour force and have been making important contributions to the national economy. According to the statistics of Boston Consulting Group (BCG), Viet Nam enjoys high gender diversity among the region, particularly in the business sector: 25 percent of CEOs or management board members are women. Businesswomen would be able to access science and technology, international markets, participate in global value chains and contribute to the shared values of the global economy. However, in the changing global context with great impacts of the 4th Industrial Revolution and digital economy, Vietnamese businesswomen still face a multitude of difficulties, in having access to finance, asset, global market, particularly in equipping themselves with the updated knowledge and skills to catch up with the drastic changes in the world economy.
In that spirit, at the Summit today, I would like to highlight a few points with regards to the Summit’s theme as follows:
Firstly, women need to take a leading role in promoting economic linkages and international cooperation. Though globalisation has its drawbacks, we should make full use of those opportunities offered by globalisation, trade liberalization and the digital age.
Secondly, in building shared values that economies are working towards at sub-regional, regional, inter-regional and global levels, gender equality and women’s empowerment must always be viewed as priorities, in which we need to identify the role of the Government and enterprises in creating settings for women to access production, business resources, creating more conditions for women to actively engage in the market. Women certainly will make active contributions to progressive global governance and sustainable, inclusive and people-centric economies.
Thirdly, women should be encouraged to update themselves with new knowledge so that they would not be left behind by the digital age and the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Each and every woman also needs to create opportunities for herself by searching for opportunities to learn and exchange knowledge in order to face the endless changes of the global economy.
Fourthly, businesswomen need to increase networking; not only at this Summit, but also all other possible opportunities to learn from each other’s experience, explore business solutions and innovations, assume social responsibility, and better affirm their role in an economy of shared values, thus contributing to an economy of shared values.
Given our extremely diverse and practical program within three days, I believe that all of the delegates will certainly have interesting and constructive discussions.
Once again, I wish Madam President and all of the delegates good health, happiness. I wish our female entrepreneurs good health, success. I wish our Summit great success.
Thank you for your kind attention./.