Forest protection on agenda at National Assembly's sitting

Legislators raised issues regarding hydropower and forest preservation and development during the 10th sitting of the 14th National Assembly in Hanoi on November 3.

They greatly appreciated the management policies adopted by the Government as well as the efforts and resolve of the entire political system in the fight against COVID-19 and the response to recent natural disasters.

They suggested the Government chart different scenarios, including a worst-case, given the possibility of the pandemic continuing to develop in a complex manner and climate change remaining unpredictable.

Some pointed to inconsistencies in the socio-economic development strategy and forestry development, with a number of forestation targets yet to be completed.

Trieu Thi Thu Phuong, a deputy from the northern mountainous province of Bac Kan, proposed the Government adjust budget allocations in the 2021-2025 mid-term public investment plan for provinces with high forest coverage rates.

The Government should also adopt policies helping residents in areas prone to natural disasters stabilise their lives, and invest more in forestry infrastructure and forestry product development, she said.

Speaking at the working session, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyen Xuan Cuong said Vietnam now has 14.6 million ha of forest, of which natural forests total 10.3 ha.

He highlighted the major efforts of the political system and the people to raise the forest coverage rate from 27 percent in 1990 to 42 percent now, compared to the global average of 29 percent.

Some 4,600 businesses are operating in the forestry industry, with forestry export revenue expected to reach US$13 billion this year, according to the minister.

He stressed the need to pour additional investments into forest protection in order to improve the quality of the task.

Vietnam’s commitments to sustainable forest development have been acknowledged internationally, he added.

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