On July 10, MARD Minister Le Minh Hoan meets with the World Bank (WB) Delegation led by the Director of Sustainable Development for East Asia – Pacific, Ms. Anna Wellenstein.
At the meeting, leaders of MARD and the WB exchange information and discuss several key topics, update the progress of six main areas of cooperation between the two sides, and detail the possibility of further expansion in the future.
The Mekong Delta Integrated Transformation and Adaptation to Climate Change (MERIT) is the project with the greatest impact on sustainable development, aiming to build water infrastructure for the Mekong Delta. However, Ms. Anna Wellenstein was concerned about the delay in the Ministry of Planning and Investment’s consultation process with local authorities.
Updating the project’s progress, Minister Le Minh Hoan states that this issue was brought up in a recent meeting with the Mekong Delta. In the coming period, MARD expects to work closely with the WB and local authorities to ensure inter-regional leadership to ensure sustainable development.
Regarding the Emission Reduction Payment Agreement for the North Central Region (ERPA), Ms. Anna Wellenstein highly commands MARD’s achievements in monitoring and reducing emissions as well as the Vietnamese people’s responsibility to protect forests. She announced that once there is an official Emission Reduction result verification report, Vietnam will receive a total of 41.2 million USD, marking the largest amount disbursed under the EAP Carbon Fund.
Minister Le Minh Hoan ensures to complete the Project Operation Manual shortly. At the same time, MARD leaders guarantee that there are sufficient mechanisms and budget sources to fairly and transparently implement the ERPA’s Benefit Sharing Plan.
As for MARD’s new project on 1 million hectares of low-emission and high-quality rice, which is built upon the success of VnSAT – the award-winning project in East Asia – Pacific region this fiscal year 2023, Minister Le Minh Hoan acknowledges the support from the WB and is ready to promote dialogue between MARD and the WB to call for attention of other ministries, sectors, businesses, and farmers.
About the Dam Safety Improvement and Repair Project and the next strategic partnership in the Water Sector Cooperation (VWE) program, Ms. Anna Wellenstein affirms MARD’s central role in the project, helping to implement the National Action Plan.
MARD appreciates the World Bank’s support of Vietnam and adds that the collaboration has yielded significant results. In the future, the Ministry is ready to work closely with the WB, other ministries and sectors, and provinces to build an inter-sectoral coordination mechanism for effective implementation of the Politburo’s Conclusion 36 on water security and safety of dams and reservoirs. Especially, in the context of climate change, the Irrigation Department is preparing a plan to submit to the Government to respond to El Nino, prevent natural disasters, and ensure water security.
The World Bank stands ready to support this important Program, helping to develop public-private data-sharing policies and practices; upgrade local infrastructure to help farmers transform their livelihoods and create efficient value chains.
For the Sustainable Fisheries Development Project, the WB expects the efficient establishment of three regional fisheries centers/dynamic fishing ports, which will boost the coastal economy and strengthen interconnectivity between areas.
MARD considers this project a priority of the Government and the fisheries sector to remove the EC’s yellow card, thereby ensuring the stability and livelihood of nearly 800,000 fishermen and over 4 million employees in the fishing industry.
Besides, regarding the Project on Capacity Building for Disaster Response in Vietnam’s Coastal Areas (WB10), WB delegates reiterate their commitment to support the program, hoping that the Ministry will have a plan to soon implement phase one of the project. Minister Le Minh Hoan said that the ministry is actively preparing for the WB10 project and will continue to research and report to WB in a timely manner.
Minister Le Minh Hoan acknowledges that besides initial successes, there are still challenges in coordination with ministries, central branches, and local authorities. MARD is committed to reporting and updating sufficient information with the WB in the next programs, hoping to effectively approach and successfully cooperate, thereby increasing Vietnam’s reputation in the world.