A round table conference on the establishment of the Vietnam – Netherlands Cooperation Forum was held on March 27 in Hanoi to intensify cooperation in the field of fruit and vegetables between the two countries.

The establishment is in line with the two sides’ expectation, bringing about new opportunities for the two sides’ agricultural cooperation, said Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Vu Van Tam.

Although Vietnam is one of the world’s five leading exporters of fruit and vegetables, the sector does not reflect the country’s potentiality and strengths, which requires support from governmental agencies, state-owned enterprises and international organisations, he added.

For his part, Netherlands Deputy Minister of Economic Affairs, Agriculture and Innovation Hans Hoogreveen expressed his hope that the private sector will take initiative in the cooperation forum focusing on training, processing and technology for sustainable development and climate change adaptation.

At the event, Director of the Vietnam Fruit and Vegetable Research Institute Trinh Khac Quang made several suggestions to further both sides’ cooperation and research in the field.

Vietnam now exports its fruit and vegetables to 40 countries and territories. In 2012, the export turnover of fruit and vegetables topped 800 million USD.

The two sides are expected to sign a cooperation agreement on the field on March 28.-VNA