Alongkorn Pollabutr, chairman of the committee steering Agricultural 4.0 policies and chairman of the Agritech and Innovation Centre, said he would discuss the details of plan with Vietnam in August.
Alongkorn unveiled the cooperation plan with Vietnam while he was giving an opening speech at the Agritechnica Asia & Horti Asia 2022 held at Bitec Bang Na Exhibition Centre.
At the event, Alongkorn welcomed Vietnam’s Deputy Agriculture and Rural Development Minister Tran Thanh Nam who was invited to attend the fair, a cooperative venture between Thailand’s Agriculture and Cooperatives Ministry and the German Agriculture Society.
In his speech, Tran thanked Alongkorn for welcoming him. He said his ministry would seek cooperation from the Thai agriculture ministry on five issues:
- Food security cooperation to increase value of crops
- Cooperation to boost the strength of farmers. Tran said Thailand has strong agricultural cooperatives and its Otop products are popular so Vietnam will send officials to learn about the work of cooperatives in Thailand.
- Cooperation to help Vietnamese farmers transition to farm machines
- Training in agricultural knowledge
- Cooperation on sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) measures.
Alongkorn said the Thai Agriculture Ministry is ready to support its Vietnamese counterpart on the five issues.
Alongkorn said Thailand and Vietnam have a joint committee to function as a mechanism to facilitate agricultural and SPS cooperation between the two countries.
Alongkorn said the joint panel would schedule a meeting as soon as possible to discuss cooperation on seven issues:
• The Thai side will seek cooperation from Vietnam to cooperate on rice production and sale from the start to the export of rice with the goal to increase prices in the global markets so that farmers will have more income. Alongkorn said global rice prices were between US$300-400 per tonne during the past 20 years while the cost has been rising.
He said if the two countries cooperate on rice production and exports, they will have bargaining power and farmers in the two countries will overcome their poverty.
• Thailand will ask Vietnam to support the establishment of the Asean Rubber Council to develop the rubber industry and support plantation owners and increase the bargaining power of Asean rubber producers.
• The Thai side will ask Vietnam to speed up permission for import of mangoes and rambutans from Thailand after the two sides agreed in principle in 2016.
The Thai Agriculture and Cooperatives Ministry will also ask Vietnam to approve the export of chickens and eggs to Vietnam after the two sides earlier agreed in principle to discuss more details in the next SPS meeting.
• The Thai side will ask Vietnam to allocate quota for Thai trucks to transport fruits vie Vietnam to China to reduce the chances of Thai fruits going rotten.
• The Thai side will propose logistics cooperation between Thailand, Laos and Vietnam at the Vung Ang pier and Haiphong pier to open more channels for export of Thai fruits and agricultural products to China and other countries.
• Thailand also wants to send officials to study Vietnam’s One Commune One Product operations.
• Thailand will ask Vietnam to inform the name of its contact point as soon as possible before the next SPS can be held.
Speaking to reporters after the speech, Alongkorn said the meeting will be held in line with the discussion framework set by Agriculture Minister Chalermchai Srion, who has been invited by his Vietnamese counterpart to make an official visit to Vietnam. The two sides have yet to schedule the visit.
Alongkorn said the two sides have agreed in principle to discuss these issues in more detail when the Thai delegation attends the Agritechnica fair in Vietnam in August.
He said the Vietnamese agricultural ministry promised to send a formal invitation to its Thai counterpart soon.
Published : Jul 01, 2022
Published : May 26, 2022
By : THE NATION