12:16 | 12/09/2015 Society
(VEN) - Breakthroughs in agricultural and rural modernization can help reduce the gap between Vietnam and countries with advanced agriculture.
At a recent workshop held in Hanoi to discuss measures to boost agricultural modernization and development of new rural areas, Head of the Central Economic Committee Vuong Dinh Hue said that over the last three decades of implementing the Doi Moi (renovation) policy, the agriculture, forestry and fisheries sector has seen its gross domestic product (GDP) grow by an average 3.7 percent annually. By the end of 2014, its contribution accounted for over 18 percent of Vietnam’s GDP. Up to 70 percent of the country’s total workforce worked in agriculture in the 1990s but this has decreased to about 47 percent by the end of last year. Vietnam’s export value for agricultural, forest and aquatic products reached more than US$30 billion last year. Despite these good results, agricultural and rural modernization has been slow. The quality of products and efficiency of agricultural production remains low. The agricultural workforce remains large, while the links between different localities as well as between different regions are still lacking.
To effectively use the resources available for agricultural development, it is necessary to shift from quantity to quality to promote a clean, high-tech agriculture, while at the same time setting up modern value chains.
Dr. Tran Du Lich, Member of the National Assembly Economic Committee, Deputy Head of Ho Chi Minh City’s delegation to the National Assembly, wondered why a country with agricultural advantages such as Vietnam continues to remain poor and suffer from too many market risks. Vietnamese agriculture has shown a slowdown while the country has to cope with a lot of challenges when opening its market as part of its international integration efforts.
According to Lich, agriculture continues to suffer from natural disasters and market risks, so the state needs to set a roadmap for minimizing risk. In addition, it needs to put in place a suitable management mechanism so risk mainly lies with the traders rather the producers.
Deputy Prime Minister Vu Van Ninh said that with 70 percent of its population living in rural areas and 50 percent of them working in the agricultural sector, Vietnam needs to attach strategic importance to agricultural and rural development. To promote its sustainable development, the agricultural sector needs to pay great attention to production planning.
Deputy Prime Minister Vu Van Ninh:
The agricultural sector needs to shift from producing what it has to produce, to what the market wants. It has to create products based on the advantages of each region and each province to build national advantages. It is necessary to maintain the links between producers to create new, high quality products, and tighten the links between farmers and processing and trading businesses.