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Lego to Build First Carbon-Neutral Factory in Binh Duong

Vietnam is set to produce the beloved bricks as regional demand for the Danish toy rises.

On Wednesday, Deputy Prime Minister Phạm Bình Minh oversaw LEGO sign a Memorandum of Understanding with the Vietnam-Singapore Industrial Park Joint Venture Company (VSIP) to invest more than US$1 billion to build a factory in Binh Duong. With operations set to begin in 2024, the factory is expected to create 4,000 local jobs. 

This will be LEGO's sixth factory, and second in Asia, following a factory built in China in 2016. The company's strategy includes placing production as close to consumers as possible and, thanks to increased spending power in the region, LEGO has experienced double-digit growth in Asia since 2019. Local demand is soon to outpace supply from the Chinese factory, and the Vietnamese facility "gives us shorter delivery time to our customers and make us able to react quickly on demand but it of course also makes us more resilient," says LEGO's Chief Operations Officer Carsten Rasmussen.

In addition to its strategic supply chain location, Binh Duong is an attractive site for the new factory due to the area's renewable energy potential. This will reportedly be LEGO's first carbon-neutral factory, and it will rely on solar panels on its roof and solar energy from a planned solar project next door for 100% of its energy needs. LEGO and VSIP will also plant 50,000 trees in Vietnam to offset the vegetation removed for construction.

The decision by the 90-year-old company represents the largest investment in Vietnam by a Danish enterprise to date. 

Claiming they encountered no production or distribution disruptions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, LEGO posted a profit of more than US$954 million in the first half of this year as it continues its impressive growth. The world's largest toy producer, it operates 677 stores worldwide, with plans to open an additional 174 in the next year.

Currently, there are no official LEGO stores in Vietnam, and their toys are only available through third-party sellers. That, however, doesn't stop the growth of a robust local community of brick-lovers. Many creative collectors, such as Khang Lego and Đặng Huy Hoàng, have crafted intricate models with a distinctive Vietnamese flair, from street corners to a nostalgic Honda Cub.

[Photo: An MOC creation using Lego bricks by a Vietnamese artist/via Instagram user Khang Lego]

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