With an agricultural land area of over 902,000 ha or more than 93% of the natural land area, coupled with favorable climate and soil conditions, Kon Tum province has great potential for agricultural development. The province thus focuses on attracting investment in agricultural development, especially high-tech agricultural production and processing. Our reporter has an interview with Mr. Nguyen Tan Liem, Director of the Kon Tum Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, on this issue.
The signing ceremony of MoU between Kon Tum Department of Agriculture and Rural Development and Charm Group JSC and Chanh Thu Fruit Import Export Group JSC
Could you please briefly introduce the local potential for developing large-scale hi-tech agricultural production? Given this advantage, what outstanding achievements has the province’s agriculture sector made?
Kon Tum has a wide variety of agricultural resources (such as soil, water, climate and weather). The province has two subclimate regions - East Truong Son and West Truong Son - that create huge advantages in agricultural development, especially in high-tech agricultural development, to improve added value and competitiveness of agricultural products (Medicinal plants: Ngoc Linh ginseng, codonopsis pilosula; Fruit trees: Durian, avocado, jackfruit, banana and passion fruit; Water specialties: fresh water and cold water; coffee; vegetables, fruits and cold-climate flowers). These are great potential and space for Kon Tum province to develop agricultural material areas, apply high-tech agriculture, produce large-scale commercial goods, and process for local consumption and for export.
Starting behind other provinces and cities in applying high tech to agricultural production, but with the guidance of the Provincial Party Committee as per Resolution 06-NQ/TU and lessons learned from other provinces and cities that have gone ahead in the high-tech application, Kon Tum province achieved good results. The province established and recognized two high-tech agricultural areas to grow coffee and vegetables, established Mang Den high-tech agricultural area and recognized two high-tech agricultural companies in Kon Plong and Dak Ha districts. These moves helped reduce costs and increased productivity and crop quality by 10-20%, bringing the total value of high-tech agricultural output to VND583.312 billion out of the total agricultural value of VND3,400 billion of the province (accounting for 17.16%).
These results have helped create breakthroughs in agricultural production and socioeconomic development in the province and served as a foundation for developing commercial agriculture, applying high-tech with processing and consumption market to 2025 and further to 2030 as per Resolution 06-NQ/DH of the 16th Provincial Party Congress and Resolution 05-NQ/TU of the Executive Board of the Provincial Party Committee.
Could you please describe the results of agricultural investment promotion and attraction in the province? What are priority areas for investment attraction?
To effectively tap and promote agricultural advantages and resources, Kon Tum province defined investment as a top priority to mobilize and diversify resources (e.g. capital, science and technology and management) to develop high-tech agricultural production, processing, consumption and export. Domestic and foreign investment promotion and attraction has gradually stepped up to unlock local agricultural advantages in general and high-tech agriculture in particular. Annual investment promotion programs consist of eight groups of underlying activities for implementation.
Up to now, Kon Tum province has licensed 27 valid high-tech agriculture projects with a total registered capital of VND6,996.182 billion and leased them 889.71 ha of land. Typical projects include a VND5,100-billion forest management and protection, tourism business and medicinal herb production and development project combined with high-tech dairy goat farming invested by Mang Den Pharmaceutical and Food Joint Stock Company, and a fruit tree and dairy farming project invested by TH Group.
Does Kon Tum province have any policies to accompany, support and encourage businesses, especially giant ones, to invest in agriculture?
In the past years, Kon Tum province has issued many policies to support, encourage and attract businesses, especially those with financial capacity, science and technology and production management, to invest in agriculture. Specifically, the province promulgated Resolution 64/2016/NQ-HDND dated August 19, 2016 of the Provincial People's Council on high-tech agricultural production and processing development projects in Kon Tum province while fully applying central policies such as preferential land, credit, human resource training, market development and scientific and technological application, support for high-tech agricultural startups and high-tech companies.
Currently, the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development has advised the Provincial People's Committee to review and reassess implementation results of local and central policies to issue integrated specific local and central policies and categorize policy groups like: (1) Supporting value chain-based production development, (2) Supporting the establishment of new agricultural cooperatives, (3) Supporting community-based production development, (4) Supporting the formation of new planting areas for medicinal herbs and fruit trees, and (5) Supporting high-tech agriculture.
Could you please tell us about key tasks and solutions of the agriculture sector of Kon Tum province in the coming time?
Based on Resolution 06-NQ/DH of the 16th Provincial Party Congress and Resolution 05-NQ/TU of the Provincial Party Committee on intensive commercial agriculture development, high-tech application, processing and consumption market to 2025 and further to 2030, the agricultural sector of Kon Tum province will resolutely focus on accelerating production restructuring and improve the economic performance of commercial production in the coming time. The sector will strengthen production cooperation, expand organic production areas, high-tech agricultural production areas in association with branding and traceability to enhance competitiveness and added value of products. It will enhance the value of native crops, coupled with structural transformation driven by research on and the addition of new highly productive crops.
The sector will boost support for registration of brands, trademarks and planting area codes; make trade promotion programs, advertise local agricultural products, step up research for consumption markets for agricultural products; raise the level of scientific and technological research, transfer and application in agriculture, especially stages of breeding, cultivation, tending, disease prevention and control, post-harvest preservation, product processing and consumption, and ensure national and international standards and regulations.
Besides, the sector will actively encourage changes in their mindset from agricultural production development to agricultural commercialization development, which stimulates high-tech application, smart agriculture, organic agriculture, ecological agriculture coupled with ecological tourism and experiential tourism in suitable areas. Cooperatives will serve as bridges to link and cooperate between producers and companies and markets. The sector will boost agricultural and rural economic development. Enterprises support, invest and orient farmers in commercial production, ensure standards and regulations to meet the requirements of the domestic and export markets.
In addition, the agricultural sector will continue to advise competent authorities to launch specific agricultural development support policies for the province. Particularly, it will focus on effective policies for each period; attract investment funds for agricultural production and processing; apply solutions to speed up administrative procedure reform in agriculture, ensure openness and convenience for people and businesses, especially scaling up information technology applications in agriculture, carrying out administrative procedures, and creating favorable conditions for companies doing business in the province.
Thank you very much!
By Nguyen Bach, Vietnam Business Forum