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September 2, 2008

Vietnam: Measures laid out to address climate change
Vietnam, one of the five countries possibly hardest hit by climate change, has set itself to raise sea and river dykes levels by 50 cm by 2020 and grow an additional 300,000 to 350,000 ha of wet-land forests and forests along dunes, state news agency VNA reported.

These were among measures raised for discussion at a workshop on natural disaster control and mitigation of climate change consequences held in Hanoi on August 30.

Experts also called for economic use of fresh water resources, ensuring supply of fresh water and environmental hygiene for saline water-affected, islands, drought and flood-prone areas, and studying new hybrids of plants and animal for saline water, drought and flood-hit areas that can stand climate change.

Vietnam’s Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Cao Duc Phat assured participants of the ministry's readiness to address climate change problems with a number of action programmes in hand.

Official development assistance will also be used to help improve relevant staff's working competence, transfer of technology and exchange of managerial experiences, pledged the minister.

Phat also unveiled a plan to encourage all institutions and individuals, both at home and abroad, to finance natural disaster control.

International cooperation in natural disasters warning and forecasting, personnel training, transfer of technology and exchange of information and experiences in natural disaster control, especially in searching and rescue operations will be prioritized, he said.

United Nations Development Programme Country Coordinator John Hendra pledged to provide more and more information necessary for Vietnamese policy makers to study and work out good strategies against climate change.

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