Natural disasters and climate change are posing mounting challenges to sustainable development and Vietnam ’s practical experience in mitigating natural calamity consequences suggested taking integrated measures to make the work productive.

Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Cao Duc Phat has said in a presentation delivered to the Fourth Session of the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction in Geneva , Switzerland on May 21-23.

Phat stressed the need to develop a system of legal documents clarifying responsibilities of relevant agencies in each stage, ranging from preparedness, mitigation, response to aftermath overcoming.

Precautionary and combat measures must be overseen in a uniform way across the country, from the central to grassroots levels while medium and long-term strategies to mitigate calamity consequences should be outlined to fit the approved action plan.

The Government needs to support plans to improve public awareness, sci-tech application efficiency, and supervisory and assessment tools, and strengthen natural disaster forecast and warning systems, Phat said.

He also underscored the importance of getting businesses and community involved in the process as well as increasing regional and global cooperation in minimising disaster risks and coping with climate change.

Talking with a Vietnam News Agency correspondent in Switzerland , Phat said in the Law on Natural Disaster Prevention, which is scheduled for adoption at the ongoing National Assembly’s fifth session, people, businesses and other sectors will be the cornerstone of the fight against calamities.

The Minister added that the Government will devise synchronous strategies against climate change affectively while developing a green economy.

On the fringes of the event which was hosted by the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, Phat and Dutch representatives also co-chaired a meeting on May 21.

Climate change, including global warming, not only results in environmental tragedies but also harms economic activities worldwide.

Natural disasters have since early this century sparked economic damage of 2.5 trillion USD while claiming millions of lives each year.

Vietnam is among 168 countries joining the 10-year action plan entitled “Hyogo Framework for Action” on minimising natural disaster risks and dealing with climate change.-VNA