United Nations (UN) Deputy Secretary General Jan Eliasson inspected water in the area (Source: tuoitre.vn)
Ben Tre (VNA) – United Nations (UN) Deputy Secretary General Jan Eliasson made a fact-finding trip to the southern province of Ben Tre on May 5 to find out about the impacts of ongoing drought and saline intrusion. 

Meeting with a local household victim, Eliasson vowed to seek solutions to helping affected farmers. 

He later inspected a landslide in Bao Thuan commune where tens of hectares of soil have been lost to blasting sea waves every year. 

Truong Duy Hai, Deputy Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee, said over 20,000ha of winter-spring crops have been completely destroyed, leading to food shortages. 

Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Cao Duc Phat informed the UN Deputy Secretary General that not only the Mekong Delta, but the central and Central Highlands are suffering from severe drought. 

The Mekong Delta loses 1 million tonnes of rice, over 9,000ha of fruit while more than 200,000 households lack enough water. 

Eliasson suggested Vietnam work with countries to devise a joint action plan and solutions conducive to climate change. 

He vowed to assist Vietnamese victims in drought-stricken areas and informed international organisations about Vietnam’s ongoing disasters. 

The UN official said he will convey information and images of Vietnam’s climate change-induced losses to a meeting in Turkey later this month.-VNA