Ministry develops measures to distribute agro products amid pandemic

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Vegetables for sale in An Giang Province. The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development is working to promote the distribution of farm products amid the resurgence of COVID-19. VNA/VNS Photo

HÀ NỘI — The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development is working to promote the distribution of farm products amid the fourth outbreak of COVID-19 in Việt Nam as well as establish a resilient agriculture sector.

The ministry’s Department of Agro Processing and Market Development Authority said the circulation of agricultural products remained stable in recent days amid the fourth wave of the virus in the country.

According to the Đồng Đăng Border Economic Zone’s management board in Lạng Sơn Province, there was some congestion of containers carrying agricultural products to China at Hữu Nghị Border Gate after the Reunification Day (April 30) and International Labour Day (May 1) holidays. However, the congestion was tackled in good time and customs clearance had returned to normal. There was no significant congestion at other border gates like Móng Cái.

Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Phùng Đức Tiến said the ministry had called for virus prevention measures to be tightened, especially at agricultural product processing plants to prevent any disruptions to supply chains.

Tiến said the COVID-19 pandemic was opening significant opportunities for Việt Nam to expand exports of agro products, given the severe shortage of supply in the global market as well as disruptions occurring to global supply chains.

It was essential for Việt Nam to contain the virus, promote bio-safety in agricultural production, expand production to increase output and productivity as well as maintain stable supply chains, Tiến said.

For products the world market has a high demand for, such as shrimp, the ministry asked for production to be increased but at the same time quality to be ensured to catch the opportunity to expand exports.

He said with an ecosystem of 13,500 enterprises, 17,000 co-operatives, 34,400 farms and 13.8 million farmer households, the agriculture sector achieved significant results in the first four months of this year. Exports increased by 24.2 per cent to reach $32.07 billion. The sector ran a trade surplus of $2.2 billion in the period.

Still, there were difficulties and challenges, especially with the COVID-19 pandemic still complex, he said.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development would continue to cooperate with other ministries and localities to implement measures with the focus on promoting production and distribution while ensuring virus prevention.

A close watch would be kept on market developments to prevent any problems with the circulation of agricultural products as well as timely updating farmers and producers on market demand for them to be active in production plans.

Processing must also be enhanced to increase added value for agro products, the ministry said. Any trade fraud or price squeezing would be strictly handled.

In the previous virus outbreak which severely hit the northern province of Hải Dương, farmers faced a lot of difficulties in selling their products in the harvest season. Prices of many types of vegetables and fruits dropped sharply. — VNS

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