More mechanisms and policies designed specifically for the Central Highlands are needed in order to spur socio-economic development in this region and 29 mountainous district bordering the five Central Highland provinces, heard a conference in Lam Dong province on July 30.

Addressing the conference, Politburo member and head of the Steering Committee for the Central Highlands General Tran Dai Quang said the new policies and mechanisms should focus on helping target localities make full use of their abundant land resource for developing agriculture in an intensive and diverse manner. He suggested giving priority to industrial trees such as coffee and cattle husbandry, adding that agriculture development should be combined with processing industry and exports.

Besides the Central Highlands, mountainous districts bordering the region also received substantial State investment over the past year under the Prime Minister’s instruction in his dispatch No.588 issued in 2009, the committee reported at the conference.

During three years from 2009-2011, about 366 billion VND (22.1 million USD) was poured into 83 socio-economic development projects in those districts.

General Quang suggested investing more in transport and irrigation works as well as electricity transmission network in these districts in the 2014-2020 period.

He asked relevant ministries and local authorities to devise preferential policies to allow people from disadvantaged backgrounds and ethnic minority groups to pursue higher education and join training courses in agro-forestry, education, health and culture.

Covering over 54,400 km squares, the Central Highlands groups provinces of Dak Lak, Dak Nong, Lam Dong, Gia Lai and Kon Tum, with a population of over 5.4 million people, 25.7 percent of them ethnic minorities.-VNA