Nguyen Quoc Cuong, who has just been re-elected Chairman of Vietnam Farmers’ Association, said, “The government’s recent policies and mechanisms have helped rural agricultural development, aiding both farmers and production. But this has not been enough in the eyes of farmers. Now we must hammer out more practical policies that will better their situations.”
According to Cuong, the association would focus on vocational technical training. The past programmes implemented were said to be ineffective.
Cuong said that they provide training for one million rural labourers annually, 70% of whom are expected to move to work in other industries, and 30% to remain in agriculture.
“Our focus will be to train farmers in their field and those who receive vocational training will be put in programmes that meet the needs of society,” he added.
He emphasised the importance of improving the business practices of agricultural workers and endowing them with a sense of responsibility to the community and the nation.
Le Van Duan, a delegate from Hai Duong Province, noted that prices have been sharply increasing and the value of crops has gone down. “This situation has made it very difficult for agricultural workers. Many do not know how to operate in a changing market and some have even offered to relinquish their land.”
Nguyen Thanh Phong, Chairman of An Giang provincial Farmers’ Association said that even though most people in the locality do farm work and have helped ensure national food security, they face many difficulties and are a vulnerable class.
“These people are hard-working. Selling their products has been their biggest obstacle. Since our rice has yet earn a name as a brand on the market, farmers are heavily dependent on middle men to sell their crops,” Phong said.
Vu Van Tham, chairman of Quang Nam provincial Farmers’ Association agreed and said that investment in agriculture in this country remains relatively modest.
Vu Thi Lien Chau, Vice Chairwoman of Lai Chau provincial Farmers’ Association, said farmers are in desperate need for more support from from both the government and the free market to reach a higher standard of living and improve in business.