Thursday, June 29 2017

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PM calls for lifting curbs on land ownership

Update: January, 13/2017 - 09:00
A farmer in a large-scale rice field of central coastal Khánh Hòa Province. The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment has been ordered to quickly find solutions for limitations on agricultural land ownership that curtail large-scale farming and production. — VNA/VNS Photo Nguyên Lý
Viet Nam News

HÀ NỘI — Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc has tasked the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment to promptly find solutions for limitations on agricultural land ownership that curtail large-scale farming and production. This follows a request by the National Assembly (NA) to amend the 2013 Land Law in order to lift the land limits, the Thời báo kinh tế Việt Nam (Việt Nam Economic Times) has reported.

Article 129 of the law allows each household in the Mekong Delta and southeast provinces a maximum of 3ha for each kind of farming - growing trees, raising aquatic animals, processing salt - with a total of  9 hectares for each household. In other areas of the country, these land plots are limited to 2ha for each type of agriculture.

Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyễn Xuân Cường this week said co-operatives and famers throughout the country, who want bigger plots for large-scale agriculture commodities, would hail such a change in the law. “All of them hope for removing the limits, day and night,” he said.

The problem was illustrated by Võ Quan Huy, a farmer from the Mekong Delta’s Long An Province, who said at a meeting held in late December that he had over 1,000ha of agricultural land in many provinces across the country.

However, due to the limits, he had to register his land under the names of other people. This, in turn, limited the amount of money he can borrow in order to develop agricultural production on a large scale, he said.

Huy said a farm that wanted to co-operate with a foreign business to produce agricultural commodities on a large scale has to own at least 100ha of land, but the law does not allow it.

Former Deputy Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Đặng Hùng Võ noted that agricultural land limits have been lifted in developed countries, where farmers were given a favourable conditions to stabilise production and make long-term investments in the agricultural sector, he said. Võ advised to lift the limits in Việt Nam as soon as possible.

Đặng Kim Sơn, former head of the Institute of Strategy and Policy under the Ministry of Agricultural and Rural Development, also said removing the limits was appropriate for a country that had shifted into commodity production and whose farmers had to consider competition in production cost, price and output, he said.

Although Việt Nam exports large amounts of farm products, "our country has yet to have rich farmers that own hundreds of hectares agricultural land and have enriched themselves by farming," he said. — VNS

 

 

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