Belgium’s Deputy Prime Minister Johan Vande Lanotte on January 21 toured the southern province of Ninh Thuan to inspect the progress of Belgian-funded water management projects in the locality.

During a working session with key provincial leaders, Lanotte, who is also Minister of Economy, Consumer Affairs and the North Sea , spoke highly of Ninh Thuan’s efforts in implementing the projects and optimising the efficiency of the investment.

He held that it is necessary to focus more on protecting water resources. As Vietnam is among the 10 most vulnerable countries to climate change, the Belgian Government is ready to cooperate with Vietnam in seeking response measures, he said.

According to provincial leaders, Belgian-funded projects in Ninh Thuan have a total investment of 31 million EUR, including nine million EUR from the Vietnamese Government.

The money was allocated to a project to construct the Lanh Ra reservoir in the 2007-2012 period, one to strengthen the constitution and capacity of personnel in water management in the 2009-2012 period and another to enhance the ability to manage water resources and respond to climate change lasting from 2010 to 2015.

The projects have generated practical outcomes, contributing to raising local people’s awareness of the environment and water protection and reducing the impacts of flooding and natural disasters.

Deputy PM Lanotte suggested that Ninh Thuan should tap its potential and advantages to attract more foreign investors, including those from Belgium .

He confirmed that he will spare no effort to encourage Belgian businesses to explore investment opportunities in Ninh Thuan, especially in the fields of tourism, which he said is a great potential of the locality.-VNA