Monday, 27 Mar 2017
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Vietnam’s rice sector needs a new vision and strategic plans: PM

Updated at Thursday, 16 Mar 2017, 13:10
The Hanoitimes - While chairing a conference on March 15 to seek solutions to develop the sector sustainably in the Mekong Delta, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc asked relevant agencies to create a new vision and strategic plans in line with the trend of globalisation.
Prime Minister (PM) Nguyen Xuan Phuc chaired a conference on March 15 in Long Xuyen city, An Giang province to discuss measures for sustainable development of Vietnam's rice industry in the Mekong River Delta region.
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc speaks at the conference.
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc speaks at the conference.
The conference aimed to help experts and localities to understand the situation and needy issues for the development, directions and measures for sustainable development of rice industry, one of the strategic export commodities.
The Mekong Delta provides up to 90 percent of Vietnam’s rice export volume thanks to special advantages for agriculture such as flat terrain, fertile soil, and abundant water supply from the Mekong River.
Vietnamese rice has been shipped to more than 150 countries with China, the Philippines, Malaysia, and the Ivory Coast as the biggest importers.
The reports unveiled at the conference showed that the rice sector is facing a high loss rate and over-15-percent broken accounting for up to 36 percent of export rice.
Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyen Xuan Cuong said rice farmers in the region are still poor as they gain the lowest benefits in the rice production chain.
Speaking at the conference, PM Phuc appreciated the results that the Mekong River Delta provinces, enterprises, ministries and agencies as well as farmers in the region have achied in developing rice production in the past years.
The PM stressed that the rice industry in the Mekong River Delta should continue to affirm its important role in the Vietnamese agricultural sector.
The Govenment leader highlighted that rice plays an irreplaceable role in Vietnam’s agriculture, which forms a pillar of the economy. Agricultural exports brought home over 32 billion USD in 2016. Almost 50 percent of the country’s workforce engages in agricultural activities.
The PM said the country needs to strive for leading in terms of rice export revenue in the world. In the next 10 to 20 years, Vietnam's rice should bring about the best added values by satisfying general nutritious and medicinal demand and standards.
PM Phuc visits a vegetable and fruit processing line of the An Giang Fruit-Vegetables & Foodstuff Joint Stock Company
PM Phuc visits a vegetable and fruit processing line of the An Giang Fruit-Vegetables & Foodstuff Joint Stock Company.
He required the rice sector to launch a comprehensive reform by breakthrough solutions in terms of policies and development models. The PM suggested expanding the land ceiling limit for each farming household in an appropriate manner.
The rice industry also needs to focus on the domestic market of nearly 100 million people to prevent imported rice’s domination, he added.
The PM also requested localities and the agriculture ministry to pursue a flexible and wise food security policy. They should encourage private investment in agriculture, expand the land use right, and abolish unnecessary regulations to foster the sector’s development.
He noted that in order to cope with changes of environment and challenges from climate change, rice production should be combined with farming models, including shrimp and fish.
The PM asked relevant agencies to create a new vision and strategic plans in line with the trend of globalisation, bringing the best value for rice growers in the new period.
The conference targeted that profit for rice growers in commercial rice production areas must account for at least 30 percent of the total revenue. The area of certified rice varieties should account for over 75 percent by 2020 and 100 percent by 2030. 
Translated by Thu Minh
Source: Cong Tho-Kinhtedothi.vn
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