Testing a new rice planting machine (Source: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – Vietnam hopes the international community will provide the country with more support to achieve sustainable agricultural development in the context of faster and more extreme changes in weather, an official said.  

Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyen Xuan Cuong made the appeal at a conference on international cooperation in the promotion of sustainable farming in response to climate change, which was held in Hanoi on December 6.

He said Vietnam has seen many extreme weather conditions in 2016, which shows climate change is taking place faster and more severe than the scenario announced in 2012.

According to the minister, relevant agencies are working on a new scenario of climate change for the country, which will be made public soon.

He noted that climate change impacts will take a heavy toll on agricultural production in the Mekong Delta region, which produces 75 percent of rice, 50 percent of fruit and 80 percent of fishery products for export of the entire nation.

Besides the Mekong Delta, six other economic zones in Vietnam will also suffer from similar affects.

The Minister said the Vietnamese Government is executing all-out actions to restructure the economy and agricultural sector to build up resilience and adaptation when facing extreme weather.

Vietnam welcomes and appreciates assistance of the international community toward its efforts to tackle climate change impacts and secure livelihoods for residents, he stressed.

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)’s acting country director Louise Chamberlain said recent droughts and saline intrusion serve as a warning for Vietnam and other countries.

She suggested that climate change risks should be included in policies and programmes designed for the agriculture sector.

The UNDP has been assisting Vietnam in making natural disaster risk management part of policies issued for major sectors and designing relevant programmes that involve local communities and reduce greenhouse gas emission in coastal areas.

Christian Berger, German Ambassador to Vietnam, highlighted agriculture, irrigation and shore protection as major factors in sustainable development of the Mekong Delta.

He said strong coordination among relevant agencies and organisations is key to the region’s success, stating that the German Government is willing to support the Vietnamese agricultural sector in that matter./.