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Re: Viet Nam

Dr. Santosh Kumar Mishra Population Education Resource Centre (PERC), Department of ...
23.04.2014
Santosh Kumar

What do you think are the main drivers of and obstacles to development for Viet Nam in the next 30 years?

  1. Drivers of development: All players and stakeholders should be given fair and ample opportunity to be part of the programme (particularly those with the least resources or the greatest economic disenfranchisement).
  2. Obstacles to development: Techniques for restoring degraded areas and sequestering soil carbon to enhance future productivity should increase or stabilize food production. Where the path to long-term sustainability means reducing productivity in the short term, economic incentives and transitional programmes will be required. Specific actions must be taken to assist those most vulnerable to long- and short-term increases in the price of food rather than relying on trickledown economic effects. Appropriate targeting of a portfolio of interventions at key points of vulnerability, such as meeting the food and nutritional needs of mothers and young children, will have disproportionately positive payoffs in future productivity and development.

Keeping in mind that each scenario represents an extreme future, how plausible do you think the scenarios for Viet Nam are? What would you like to add/change in each scenario to make it more plausible from your perspective?

Viet Nam: The core issue of food security in Vietnam is the problem of poverty. Food supply is pretty full (rice and other food) but there are still large numbers of people who lack income to buy enough food. The rice farmers suffer a major cost in the food security policy of the Government. Growing rice is the most inefficient form of production for poor farmers if they want to increase their income. In some localities, income from rice is so low that farmers abandon fields if they are not allowed to convert land to other purposes. This makes negative impacts on the development of the country, land waste and does not help reduce poverty.

What solutions would support the drivers of the best scenario and help overcome obstacles encountered on the way? How about overcoming the challenges of the worst scenarios? (all countries)

Feeding the world in an equitable and sustainable manner must involve food production and the food system assuming a much higher priority in political agendas across the world. Shaping the debate around issues like jobs, economic development and public health rather than about “joint sacrifice” would be most effective. Government departments around the world should consider moving responsibility for water, food and energy into one department to improve effectiveness.

What are the key first steps needed to get a change process in motion, and who needs to be involved? (all countries)

There is a growing sense of urgency in establishing an effective and democratic agricultural system, which has in turn slowly given way to the emergence of various social movements and initiatives (such as the IPC) that highlight the importance of creating self-reliant local food systems. Food sovereignty is widely recognized as the right of all individuals to define their own agricultural policies, policies that are socially and economically appropriate in ensuring people’s physical and emotional well-being. This includes the right to food and the right to produce the food that’s necessary to sustain a society. For food security to be existent, it is paramount to ensure physical and economic access to a variety of food products that meet the dietary needs for a healthy living. There is need:

  1. to ensure adequate food supplies both at the national and local level,
  2. to create a reasonable degree of stability in the supply food network, and
  3. to ensure the ability of households to physically and economically access the food that is required.