Climate change

Agriculture development in Mekong Delta must adapt to climate change (Vietnamese PM)

March 8, 2022

KIEN GIANG — Agricultural development in the Mekong Delta region must adapt to climate change and be closely linked to the growth of industry and services, said Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính.

He made the statement while presiding over a meeting jointly held in Kiên Giang province in the Mekong Delta on Sunday by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and people’s committees from 13 cities and provinces to discuss measures to promote agricultural development in the region and to deal with climate change.

Prime Minister Chính said that the Mekong Delta region occupies a very important position in terms of politics, economy, society, national defense and security as well as trade with ASEAN member countries. and the Greater Mekong sub-region.

The region has many competitive advantages. It is the largest center of agricultural production in Việt Nam with the mission of ensuring national food security and export, creating jobs for 65% of the inhabitants of the region, according to the Prime Minister. The region first succeeded in restructuring agriculture and improving the living conditions of local populations. It has formed specialized production patterns in rice, fruit and seafood cultivation with the application of high technology, helping to create huge volume of products and increasing competitive advantages in the international market.

The Mekong Delta region accounts for 31.7% of GDP in the agricultural sector. It contributes up to 50% of the country’s rice production, 65% of aquaculture production and 70% of fruit production. It also represents 95% of the volume of rice intended for export and 60% of the volume of fish intended for export.

However, the Head of Government noted that the development of the region is still not reaching its potential due to some limitations and challenges such as the slow transition of agricultural production mindsets and small and fragmented agricultural production. Agricultural production is not stable, still dependent on weather conditions and consumer markets, while lacking strong links between production, processing and consumption.

Agricultural production is also affected by objective factors such as climate change and rising sea levels, as well as the exploitation and use of water resources in countries upstream of the Mekong River, according to the prime minister.

Prime Minister Chính asked localities to focus on the rapid and sustainable development of the Mekong Delta region towards adaptation to climate change, improving the living conditions of local people while maintaining defense and security. national as well as social order and security.

He instructed the region to promote its spirit of self-reliance, diversify financial resources, accelerate public-private partnership and mobilize all resources for investment in development.

He asked relevant ministries and agencies to complete mechanisms and policies to develop the region and focus on promoting the development of strategic infrastructure; professional training; investment in science and technology to improve productivity; and create trademarks for products from the region.

It is also necessary to take advantage of the trade agreements that Việt Nam has signed to expand consumer markets, he said.

Prime Minister Chính said he wants the Mekong Delta region to develop stronger in the future, becoming a modern agricultural center with sustainable development, high productivity and efficiency.

The Mekong Delta region covers 39,700 km², or 12.2% of the country’s total area, with a total population of over 18 million people, or 19% of the country’s population.

PM inaugurates country’s largest irrigation system

Prime Minister Chính on Saturday attended a groundbreaking ceremony for the first phase of the Cái Lớn – Cái Bé irrigation system in Châu Thành district, Kiên Giang province.

Linking the Cái Lớn River to the Cái Bé River, the project is expected to improve agricultural and aquaculture production, control salinity and combat the effects of climate change on more than 384,000 ha of land in five provinces of Kiên Giang, Hậu Giang, Cà Mau, Bạc Liêu and Sóc Trăng, comprising more than 364,000 ha of agricultural and aquaculture production.

It will also supply fresh water to An Minh and An Biên districts of Kiên Giang province during periods of low rainfall.

Construction of the first phase began in October 2019 with an investment of over VNĐ 3.3 trillion ($143.3 million). It covers 54.5 ha of land in Châu Thành district.