An irrigation canal in Cu Chi district of Ho Chi Minh City, which has been recognised as a new-style rural district (Photo: VNA)

Ninh Binh (VNA) – Improving quality and efficiency should be the focus of the National Target Programme on New-style Rural Area Building in the 2018-2020 period, stated Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) Tran Thanh Nam.

Addressing a national conference of coordination offices for the programme at all levels in the northern province of Ninh Binh on April 6, Nam said that the One Commune-One Product (OCOP) project and a scheme on boosting science-technology application in rural localities will be sped up.

He said that this year, the ministry will concentrate on improving production and environmental conditions of rural communes.

The deputy minister revealed that the MARD has developed a project to support mountainous and island communes to implement the new-style rural building programme in a more effective manner.

He also asked localities to finalise plans on building model rural districts.

Nguyen Minh Tien, head of the Central Coordination Office for the programme, held that the OCOP project is key to enhance incomes of rural people and boosting the sale of agricultural products in a sustainable manner.

Tien proposed the development of a project to build a modern supply system of agricultural products in 2030, with an aim to form a farm produce distribution system and ensure connection between producers and consumers.

He also stressed that environment is the hardest criteria to meet of the programme, along with criteria in clean water access.

Chairman of the People’s Committee of Ninh Binh Dinh Trung Phung suggested that more preferable policy be designed to attract more businesses to agricultural sector and enhance the effective operation of agricultural co-operatives.

Currently, Ninh Binh has 80 out of total 119 communes fulfilling all criteria of the programme.

The the National Target Programme on New-style Rural Area Building, initiated by the Vietnamese Government in 2010, sets 19 criteria on socio-economic development, politics, and defence, aiming to boost rural regions of Vietnam.     

The list of criteria includes the development of infrastructure, the improvement of production capacity, environmental protection, and the promotion of cultural values.      

According to the Central Coordination Office for the Programme, as of the end of the first quarter of 2018, 3,289 communes nationwide earned the recognition as new style rural areas, up 220 communes compared to the end of 2017.

Forty-eight districts in 26 centrally-run cities and provinces were recognised as new-style rural areas.-VNA