Illustrative image (Source: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – Over the past years, Vietnam’s agricultural sector has reaped marked achievements, helping ensure national food security.

Vietnamese staples such as coffee, rice, rubber, cashew nuts, pepper, fruit, seafood, wood and timber products have gained firm foothold in the global market.

Statistics show that the sector’s gross domestic product (GDP) grows about 2.5 percent while its production value expands by 2.73 percent each year.

During the 2013-2017 period, the sector’s total export turnover reached 153 billion USD, with 36.2 billion USD earned in 2017. Seven out of the 10 major products saw export turnover exceeding 1 billion USD.

To create impressive changes in agricultural production, the Vietnam Farmers’ Union (VFU) has signed a cooperation programme with the Ministry of Science and Technology, under which the two sides join hands in implementing scientific and technological tasks during the 2016-2020 period, according to Thao Xuan Sung, Chairman of the VFU Central Committee.

The union’s chapters have carried out technology transfer and scientific application in production, he added.

Thanks to emulation campaigns, many household businesses, farms, small- and medium-sized enterprises and cooperatives have been formed, helping hundreds of thousands of households escape from poverty.

The project on vocational training for rural labourers by 2020, approved by the Prime Minister in 2009, has proven effective since nearly 210,000 people had received vocational training as of 2017, the vocational training management department under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development reported.

Leu Vu Dieu, Vice Chairman of the VFU Central Committee, said the union’s chapters have paid due attention to expanding and improving the quality of vocational training services.

They have organised more than 300,000 training courses on scientific and technological application in production for 15 million members and built over 60,000 Vietgap (Vietnam Good Agricultural Practices) models, he said.

At a recent working session with the VFU, head of the Party Central Committee’s Economic Commission Nguyen Van Binh highlighted the important role of the union in the sustainable development of the agriculture-based economy.

The official urged the union’s chapters to support farmers in developing large-scale production, applying high-tech and ensuring quality and high added values of products, thus meeting requirements of the international integration.

To that end, it is necessary to connect farmers with cooperatives and businesses, he stressed.

Binh also asked the VFU to closely coordinate with ministries, agencies and localities in order to encourage farmers to realise the Party and State’s policies on agricultural restructuring in tandem with the efforts in new-style rural area building and sustainable poverty reduction.

At the same time, the union should pay more attention to improving knowledge and capacity of its members, and protecting their legitimate rights and interests, making them the subject of the industrialisation and modernisation of agriculture and rural areas, he stressed.-VNA