Chairman of the Mekong Delta city of Can Tho, Le Hung Dung, and New Zealand Ambassador, Haike Manning, agree to strengthen bilateral cooperation on high-quality agricultural production.

During their meeting on October 3 in Can Tho, the two sides decided to increase the exchange of expertise in a number of fields, including rice production, flower and ornamental plant cultivation, agricultural processing, and dairy farming.

According to Manning, New Zealand, with a population of 4.5 million, can feed up to 40 million people, thanks to its high-tech agriculture sector.

Major export products include farm produce, health foods, honey and cow’s milk, he said.

The diplomat said his country is keen to foster its affiliation with Can Tho and Vietnam’s Mekong Delta region with a view to developing a high-quality, low-cost competitive agricultural sector, thus benefitting local farmers.

Dung pledged to continue to support New Zealand-funded projects in Can Tho with preferential policies such as tax breaks, assistance in legal procedures and the provision of infrastructure.

He also proposed that the New Zealand Ambassador identify a locality with similar natural features to Can Tho so they could be twinned, thus strengthening the partnership between the two countries.

Statistics from the Can Tho Department of External Relations show that the locality exported 3.5 million USD worth of goods to New Zealand last year. During the first half of this year, 2.1 million USD worth of products were sold to New Zealand, with rice accounting for 58 percent and aquatic products accounting for 42 percent.-VNA