return icon

Mekong farming lags behind: experts

VietNamNet Bridge – A lack of cutting-edge technologies, unrealistic policies, and a failure to take advantage of local expertise and knowledge are constraining agricultural development in the country, 

VietNamNet Bridge – A lack of cutting-edge technologies, unrealistic policies, and a failure to take advantage of local expertise and knowledge are constraining agricultural development in the country, experts have said.


Harvesting rice in Hau Giang Province. The agricultural sector plays a key role in national economic development, but the sustainability of production in the sector remains low. 

Nguyen The Ha, of the Bui Van Ngo Mechanics Industry and Agriculture Ltd Company, said that agriculture played a key role in national economic development, but the sustainability of production remained low.

Speaking at a seminar in HCM City on Tuesday, Ha said that unstable agricultural production, outdated processing technologies and high costs had also contributed to the slow progress of the industry.

Ha said that the cost of rice production, for example, could be reduced from VND3,300 (about US$0.1) per kg to between VND1,800-2,000 per kg by applying advanced technologies to the agricultural production.

“We have conducted research on how to reduce rice production costs for 20 years. But due to a lack of appropriate policies and incentives, the country has not achieved the target,” he said.

Straw is now sold at only VND700-800 per kg, but could be sold for VND1,800-2,000 per kg if it was in a rolled package. If straw was processed for cattle feed, it could sell for VND8,000 per kg.

Straw could also be exported for other purposes, he said.

“The Mekong Delta has 10 million tonnes of straw. If we apply advanced technologies to agricultural production, we can increase the value of rice significantly,” he said. “We are wasting a huge and valuable resource”.

“We are doing research on making a new machine that would transform straw into cattle feed, but we are looking for state support or incentives,” he said.

Vo Tong Xuan, rector of Nam Can Tho University, said the region should not focus solely on rice plantations, but should shift to other cultivated crops.

Dong Thap Province, for example, could shift from planting rice to mango for export, but it would need support from various sectors and agencies.


The region faces a number of problems, including the loss of farmland due to global warming, saline intrusion and pollution.

Le Quang Tri, director of the Institute for Climate Change Research at Can Tho University, said households had not adapted well because of inadequate policies.

He called on provinces to create policies that combine regional linkages and trade diversification to fully exploit the strengths of each locality, focusing on “policies and people as the decisive factors”.

Le Thanh Tung, an official of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, said the delta’s farm produce had not met certain international standards and that a growing frequency of epidemics was raising production costs.

Tran Huu Hiep, of the Steering Committee for the Southwest Region, called on the region to strengthen management and quality oversight of local agricultural products.

Other shortcomings include poor infrastructure, a shortage of skilled labourers, and a lack of a specific plan for global integration under new free trade agreements.

The region produces more than 50 per cent of the country’s rice and 90 per cent of exports, in addition to 70 per cent of fruit and nearly 70 per cent of aquatic produce.

Xuan, of Nam Can Tho University, said that government agencies should provide more information about the content of bilateral and multilateral free trade agreements to farmers and businesses.

To prepare for global integration, farmers should modernise production, reduce production costs by working together, and strictly follow good agricultural practices, he said.

He also called on the government to invest more in improving the region’s infrastructure, reform education, and develop favourable policies related to land ownership, rural credit and technology transfer.

To be competitive with other countries, domestic businesses must produce quality products, meet customers’ tastes, supply goods at the right time, and offer competitive prices, he said. 


related news


Market likely to continue to correct this week

Analysts said that in the current environment, financial markets will be very likely to continue revaluing.

Over US$6 bln earmarked for national socio-economic recovery

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh has issued a decision earmarking over VND147 trillion (US$6.39 billion) from the State budget for ministries, agencies and localities to carry out the socio-economic recovery and development programme.

FPT Software produces made in Vietnam chips

Vietnam’s FPT Software has launched a new subsidiary, FPT Semiconductor, marking a key milestone for the company as it enters the booming semiconductor industry.

Vietnam's entrepreneurial 'bosses': how are they doing?

There are several famous entrepreneurs in Vietnam who are called “boss”, including Vo Quoc Thang, Tran Dinh Long, Doan Nguyen Duc and Nguyen Duc Thuy.

Automakers facing legal vacuum

The Ministry of Science and Technology will officially lift regulations on the localization ratio in the automobile sector and the levels at which imported vehicle components are knocked down beginning October 1.

Entertainment and cultural events of the week (October 3-9)

Upcoming entertainment and cultural events in Vietnam's major cities on October 3-9.

Autumn on Con Dao

Con Dao is at its peaceful and charming best in the early days of autumn, with clear blue water and romantic sunset.

Digital content firms are at disadvantage in international lawsuits

Many enterprises say that Vietnam lacks effective tools to fight unhealthy competition. There are legal documents to cover the issue but it is difficult to apply and enforce them.

MPI: Growth scenario in 2023 of about 6.5 percent

Assessing that difficulties and advantages will be inextricably intertwined in 2023 but the difficulties will far overweigh the advantages.

HCMC welcomes first group of cruise ship tourists after Covid-19 pandemic

The Saigon Port Joint Stock Company, in collaboration with the Department of Tourism of Ho Chi Minh City and some units, on October 2, held a ceremony to welcome the luxury cruise ship Le Laperouse of Ponant (France).


Investigations on corruption cases to expand: official

Rock tales in Ganh Yen

Ganh Yen is located along the fishing village of Thanh Thuy in Binh Hai Commune, Binh Son District, Quang Ngai Province.


GDP growth to hit 8% this year in base-case scenario: Official

Doan Thien An crowned Miss Grand Vietnam 2022

Doan Thien An, 22-year-old beauty from the Mekong Delta province of Long An, was crowned Miss Grand Vietnam 2022 after surpassing 49 other contestants at the pageant finale in Ho Chi Minh City on October 1.

Vietnam’s GDP growth to be among the highest in SE as int’l organisations forecast

Vietnam’s GDP growth in 2022 and 2023 will be among the highest in Southeast Asian as shown in many international organisations’ forecasts and assessments on the Vietnamese economic outlook.