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FAO in Viet Nam

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FAO started working in Vietnam in 1978. Since then, FAO Viet Nam has provided technical assistance, advice to the Government, and has been involved in the implementation of some 400 projects in the areas of sustainable agricultural development, food security and nutrition, forestry and fisheries.

During the 1980s, the Government of Viet Nam embarked on the process of Doi Moi. Since then FAO quickly became an important partner and the main contributor of technical assistance in the agriculture sector. One of the initial goals of the partnership was to restore development in agriculture, forestry and fisheries.

During the1990s, in response to the new challenges, FAO redirected its focus in Viet Nam towards offering the Government policy advice, assisting in the formulation of policies that address sustainable national food security, the improvement of agricultural support services, planning and implementation of projects targeted at the rural poor.

FAO today: Striving for a food secure future

Nutrition is key to achieving the long-term goal of accomplishing food security and good health throughout the country. This requires paying special attention to access by all segments of the Vietnamese population to adequate supplies of foods that contribute to better diet and nutrition. Although Viet Nam has reached the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) in eradicating extreme poverty and hunger, malnutrition among children under five remains a major public health challenge. Therefore through the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) fund, FAO is leading a joint nutrition and food security programme with WHO and UNICEF, to end malnutrition and stunting in children and vulnerable groups in Viet Nam.

FAO is contributing to improve rural livelihoods in Viet Nam under Viet Nam’s National Target Programme on New Rural Development (NTP-NRD). As the lead technical agency, FAO is joining hands with four UN Partners (UNSESCO, UNIDO, IOM and UNV) working closely with the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development  to improve livelihoods and living standards of rural people in an inclusive, equitable and sustainable manner, by enhancing knowledge, designing enabling policies, building capacity and creating an adequate monitoring and evaluation mechanism.

With Viet Nam’s agricultural activities being seriously affected by climate change, FAO has been supporting the development of policies and national programmes to strengthen the agriculture sector’s capacity to mitigate the effects of greenhouse gas. The project has already developed guidelines to assist stakeholders in the development of proposals for appropriate mitigation actions. A field demonstration of potential mitigation practices for a rice paddy-based Integrated Food and Energy System will soon be operational along the Red River Delta, as well as a monitoring, reporting and verification system designed to quantify mitigation options for the integrated system.

FAO is also engaged in the South-South Cooperation Programme and so far 10 countries (Angola, Benin, Chad, Congo, Madagascar, Mali, Mozambique, Namibia, Senegal and Togo) have benefited from the support of approximately 400 Vietnamese experts and technicians. Most recently 3 experts and 5 technicians from Viet Nam have provided long-term aquaculture assistance to Namibia through knowledge sharing and capacity building, which resulted in higher productivity of healthy catfish.

The FAO Emergency Center for Transboundary Animal Diseases (ECTAD) Viet Nam program was established early in 2006 to support the Viet Nam government in combatting the spread and entrenchment of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI H5N1). As the emergency situation subsided, the ECTAD Viet Nam program transitioned to address broader animal health, animal production, and food safety areas guided by shifting Viet Nam Government priorities. The disease prevention and control program expanded to include other important diseases including rabies, foot and mouth disease (FMD), porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS), classical swine fever (CSF), and other influenza A viruses including H7N9 and H5N6, to name a few. Most recently, FAO is supporting One Health which aims to address human, animal and ecological health in a collaborative cross-sectoral and transdisciplinary manner.