Illustrative image (Source: VNA)
 
Hanoi (VNA) – Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyen Xuan Cuong asked for New Zealand (NZ)’s support in improving the value of farm produce during a meeting with NZ Minister of Agriculture, Biosecurity, Food Safety, and Rural Communities Damien O’Connor in Hanoi on August 29.

Cuong lauded NZ’s modern and eco-friendly agricultural industry, in particular its widespread organic farming which, he said, provides a model for not only Vietnam but other countries worldwide too.

According to him, NZ’s agricultural sector holds its strengths in technology, state governance, and manufacturing, while Vietnam still holds huge potential for its farm produce. However, the value of Vietnamese farm produce remains low with weak competitiveness and a lack of trademarks, and as such quality supervision is needed to expand its market range.

He said Vietnam needs NZ’s assistance with standardisation; chain management experience; personnel training for State agencies, schools, institutes, and businesses; and facilitation of cooperation among businesses.

Over the past few years, NZ has helped Vietnam through specific projects, particularly those regarding animal breeding and response to natural disasters.

The host wished that NZ would promptly offer technical support in building trademarks and developing markets for dragon fruit and kiwi fruit, adding that Vietnam will review procedures for joint projects so as to accelerate their progress and build specific cooperation schemes.

O’Connor, who is also NZ Minister for Trade and Export Growth, said Vietnam and NZ have signed an agreement on food safety and biosecurity, adding that both sides could work closely together in the future granting e-licences to facilitate trade.

The guest expressed his support for ASEAN’s one-stop shop mechanism which, he said, will facilitate technological application and trade.

He added that NZ wants to supply food to the world and partner with Vietnam to improve its capacity and manufacturing. He hoped that Vietnam will assist the country in supplying products to the world.

At the meeting, the two ministers witnessed the signing of a memorandum of understanding on bilateral cooperation. –VNA