25/09/2009 | 12:33:14

Hanoi to modernise agriculture

Development officials in the capital are determined to boost socio-economic growth in outlying rural and suburban districts through projects that focus on rural modernisation during the 2006-10 stage.

According to the city's Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, the capital now has five outlying districts with 104 communes and towns.

Among them, 98 communes have 74,219ha of agricultural land, accounting for 80% of the city's total area.

The city's Party Committee Secretary, Pham Quang Nghi, said that land and residents are the key elements of agriculture and rural areas outside the city.

He made the statement at a working session on Tuesday with the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, where he asked the department to continue to copy and develop crop strains, transfer technologies to farmers, and turn rural and suburban land into bio-urban areas to produce more safe, high quality farm produce.

He also highlighted the need for reforestation and clean water areas. Applying advanced, environmental friendly technologies to production to protect and improve the city's environment are key parts of the process, he said.

Currently, the city's agriculture sector has fallen behind in applying advanced technologies, a cause for alarm due to its crucial role in developing clean food and protecting the city's environment.
By implementing the city Party Committee's Programme No 5 on development of agriculture and rural areas, the city has gained an average production value of VND59.1mil per ha.

Hanoi now has 500 farms, with an average production value of VND80-150mil per ha.

City developers have shaped a course for developing clean vegetables, fruit trees, flowers and aquaculture on earmarked land.

The department invested in small- and medium-sized industrial zones with five projects focusing on developing handicraft villages. Builders completed Tu Liem and Ninh Hiep industrial parks at the end of March.

To ensure access to clean water, city development officials have built 71 water supply stations. More than 93% of the population can access water in towns like Soc Son and Cau Dien, where clean water supply systems were previously unavailable.

Each day, 58,000 cattle, 406,000 pigs and poultry numbering in the millions create 2,800 tonnes of waste in the city's five outlying districts, a problem that the city Department of Agriculture and Rural Development began analysing back in 1997, when officials asked the Agriculture Promotion Centre to build bio-gas tanks to process livestock waste.
The districts now have more than 4,000 biogas tanks, which process animal dung to create gas, and, in turn, electricity, for farmers.
As Hanoi's urbanisation continues at a rapid rate - especially in outlying districts - only about 40 communes have managed to maintain stable agricultural areas, according to the city's Department of Planning and Architecture.
Deputy director of the city's Department of Planning and Architecture, Do Viet Chien, said it was necessary to maintain stable agricultural areas even in districts, that have rapid urbanisation, such as Tu Liem District.
In response, developers earmarked areas for varying agricultural production projects, such as concentrating vegetables in Yen My and Duyen Ha communes of Thanh Tri District; Dang Xa and Van Duc communes in Gia Lam District; Van Noi and Nam Hong communes in Dong Anh District; and Thanh Xuan Commune in Soc Son District.
With so much development and land redistributon by the State, Chien said, city officials decided to alter the labour market by building vocational centres for job training.
The centres are part of short-term training projects helping rural labourers, who have had their land taken by the State, to learn a new trade.
Chien said that among the plans for urbanisation in the last five years, there were areas earmarked for job training and measures to attract labourers to work in industrial zones or to learn an urban trade./.(VNS)

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