Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyen Xuan Cuong  (standing) orders measures in response to natural disasters. (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) - Relevant ministries and sector should channel their focus and draw up measures in response to natural disasters for the time to come, said Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyen Xuan Cuong at a meeting held in Hanoi on July 25.

As there is huge risk of landslides and floods in the upcoming raining season, Cuong ordered the National Centre for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting (NCHMF) to keep a close watch on weather developments to give prompt forecasts and warnings so that ministries and localities can make thorough preparations to respond to natural calamities.

Cuong proposed the Vietnam Meteorological and Hydrological Administration under the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, in collaboration with the Directorate for Natural Disaster Prevention and Control under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, to jointly collect hydrology information along the Mekong River for authorities.

Underlining the importance of natural disaster prevention missions, Cuong asked cities and provinces to implement measures which can reduce losses caused by floods and landslides, and stabilise local livelihoods, while also working out solutions to ensure safety for residents who are frequently hit by floods or inundation.

They must guide farmers to re-organise rice production, enhance management of fishing vessels and aquaculture farming to minimise losses, as well as work to ensure traffic safety in mountainous and low-lying areas.

In particular, Mekong Delta localities should introduce and focus on appropriate measures to deal with floods in the region.

The Central Steering Committee for Natural Disaster Prevention and Control and the Border Guard Command are responsible for inspecting fishing vessels’ safety in case of storms. Meanwhile, the Ministry of Health is in charge of guiding medical check-ups and disease prevention among local residents while examining environmental and hygiene conditions.

At the event, representatives from the rescue agency under the General Staff of the Vietnam People’s Army and the Directorate for Natural Disaster Prevention and Control said that their forces and vehicles have already been detached to join search and rescue efforts in Laos following the collapse of the Xepian-Xe Nam Noy hydropower dam.-VNA