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Posts Tagged ‘Essential’

Food security essential to socio-political stability

In Uncategorized on November 10, 2010 at 1:51 am

Scientific research investment is essential

In Uncategorized on July 6, 2010 at 4:17 pm

Scientific research investment is essential

QĐND – Tuesday, July 06, 2010, 20:46 (GMT+7)

The objective of the strategy to develop the agricultural mechanical engineering sector to 2010 with a vision for 2020 is to meet about 45-50 percent of the domestic demand for agricultural machinery. So far this objective has not been realized yet. Promoting business cooperation and investment in technology is considered to be a solution to vitalize the Vietnamese agricultural mechanical engineering sector.


Heavy dependence on imports

An agriculture-based country, Vietnam has a high demand for mechanical products. Every year, Vietnam manufactures about 550,000 agricultural machinery items, which include mostly diesel engines, power generators and combine harvesters.

About 1,300 companies are operational throughout the country, specializing in manufacturing/trading in tractors and many other kinds of agricultural machinery and equipment. In addition to those, there are 1,218 facilities specializing in repairing and maintaining machinery and equipment.

However, Doan Xuan Hoa, the deputy director of the Department of Processing and Trade of Agro-Forestry-Fisheries Products and Salt Production of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, said, “The domestic demand for agricultural machinery and equipment, especially tractors, plough machines and combine harvesters, is very high. Meanwhile the volume of machinery manufactured domestically is insufficient to meet the actual demand.”

Presently, most types of agricultural machinery that are being used in Vietnam are products of China or other countries. Statistics show that Chinese products accounts for about 60 percent of all agricultural machinery and equipment items being used in Vietnam, Vietnamese-manufactured products account for about 30 percent, and the remaining were used products imported from foreign countries such as Japan and the Republic of Korea.

Mr. Hoa said that most types of machinery manufactured in Vietnam still show many shortcomings compared with imported products, for example low capacity, outdated technology and expensive prices.

The Government has released Resolution 497, under which farmers are offered an interest subsidy for the loans they borrow to buy agricultural machinery and equipment. However, domestically manufactured agricultural machinery and equipment do not meet the actual demand in terms of both quality and quantity. Therefore the situation cannot improve yet.


Businesses are unwilling to invest

Despite the high demand for agricultural machinery, domestic companies seem to be unwilling to invest in this market. While the State is encouraging investment in the manufacture of some types of agricultural machinery such as high-capacity diesel engines, tractors and machine tools, no domestic company is willing to invest.

Mr. Hoa said, “The manufacture of agricultural machinery requires big investments but does not bring in a high profit as manufacturing other types of mechanical products. This is the reason why domestic companies are unwilling to invest in manufacturing agricultural machinery. ” It takes much time to manufacture a complete farming tool as well as to recover the amount of money that is invested in manufacturing. Moreover, cultivation areas in Vietnam are scattered but not concentrated, and this is another reason making domestic companies unwilling to invest in manufacturing agricultural machinery”.


What solution?

For all the above problems, it is not easy to vitalize the domestic agricultural mechanical engineering sector. Nguyen Van Thu, the president of the Vietnam Association of Mechanical Engineering, said, “Appropriate policies must be put in place to encourage investment in the manufacture of agricultural machinery.”

Most importantly, in his opinion, it is necessary to build the linkage between domestic mechanical companies. It will be impossible for a single domestic company to withstand fierce competition with Chinese products.

It will be a good solution for domestic mechanical companies to cooperate with each other so that each of them can specialize in manufacturing some components of agricultural machinery. It is very costly as well as time and manpower-consuming to manufacture a complete agricultural machinery item.

Cooperation helps reduce the manufacture cost and shorten the time needed to manufacture as well as to recover the amount of invested capital. Thanks to cooperation, domestic mechanical companies can become more competitive.

In the long term, to prevent the domestic agricultural machinery market from being swamped with imported products, it is necessary to build and tighten the linkage between scientists and manufacturers in order to improve the quality of products and reduce the manufacture cost, thus enhancing the competitiveness of domestic mechanical manufacturers.

The State has put in place policies that offer preferences to those who do scientific research catering to agriculture but reality shows that every year not more than 10 percent of the research results have been applied in production. So the problem is how to reduce the manufacture cost so that manufacturers can make a profit. “The most important and long-term solution is investing in scientific research,” Mr. Hoa asserted.

Source: VEN/VietnamNet


Source: QDND

Access to essential medicines far from being achieved: WHO

In Uncategorized on June 24, 2010 at 12:43 pm

The government has consistently given pharmaceutical issues top priority within its development agenda. However, access to essential medicines, especially for the poor has not yet become a reality. Ways to improve the situation were discussed at a meeting held on June 23 in Hanoi titled: “Strengthen the capability of accessing essential medicines.”

Dr. Jean-Marc Olivé, WHO Representative in Vietnam

The meeting was co-ordinated by the Vietnamese Ministry of Health and the World Health Organization (WHO).

Dr. Jean-Marc Olivé, WHO Representative in Vietnam, said increasing access to pharmaceuticals has been a major facet of significant government policies, such as the Social Economic Development Plan, and is one of the pillars of the five-year National Health Plan.

WHO recognize the government’s programs for essential medicines, especially the keen attention given to the implementation of quality programs and good practices for the manufacturers, distribution and supply of medicines.

The question that you may raise is simple – there are more than 20,000 pharmaceutical products registered in the market – but why do we say that people, especially the poor, cannot access the medicines they need? Dr. Olivé added.

The WHO representative pointed out that the prices of medicines are high and people cannot afford them. Recent comparative data shows that medicines in Vietnam, which are used to treat diseases with the highest burden, are priced higher than they are listed on the international reference index.

Dr. Olivé stressed that the poor do not have adequate resources to buy them. A study done in 2008 on the treatment of diabetes showed that people insulin costs patients an average of US$17 a month (US$204 per year). 

Medicines are also continually over-prescribed and used irrationally, wasting both government and the patient’s resources, said Dr. Olivé. When the government spends much of its budget paying for expensive medicines, resources are lost, and less people are served. On the other hand, irrational usage and sale of antibiotics, often without prescription, risks the occurrence of antimicrobial resistance, which will make treatment of infectious diseases more difficult and more expensive.

Dr. Truong Quoc Cuong, chief of the Vietnam Drug Administration, said that the total payment for medications in Vietnam last year was up to US$1.5 trillion, an increase of 19 percent. An average person spends US$19.77 on drugs yearly. Profits from drugs produced domestically reached US$831 million in 2009.

Mr. Cuong said more pharmaceutical firms in the country have strengthened production, but few of them manufactured specific drugs for new diseases.

Dr. Olivé prescribed that concerted action be taken to overcome the barriers to access. It is time that Vietnam and WHO think of different approaches and reassess our programs and policies to make sure that they meet the fundamental public health objective of ensuring access to safe, quality-assured, affordable medicines.

He advised the Vietnamese government to consider developing a comprehensive policy for generic medicines and ensure universal coverage for health that makes provisions for the poor. He proposed that medicines for children and mothers should be made available at all times in health communes and in public health facilities.

At the same time, prescription and use of essential medicines should be monitored and that inappropriate incentives in the selection and procurement of medicines should be eliminated, he stressed.

Dr Nguyen Quoc Trieu, Minister of Health, promised to rearrange the index of essential medications that home enterprises can manufacture and concentrate on producing important materials, including antibiotics, as well as to adopt measures that would stabilize the price for drugs not yet produced in Vietnam.

Source: SGGP

Quality of NA questioning sessions essential

In Uncategorized on June 10, 2010 at 3:39 pm

Quality of NA questioning sessions essential

QĐND – Thursday, June 10, 2010, 20:59 (GMT+7)

Supervision is one of the National Assembly (NA)’s key functions but ensuring the quality of questioning sessions is always an issue of major public concern.

Prior to the Q&A sessions, more than 170 questions raised by 80 deputies from 40 NA delegations have been sent to the Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Ministers and Ministers, according to the NA’s Secretariat.

Four ministers who will be involved in the upcoming Q&A session are Minister of Finance Vu Van Ninh, Minister of Transport Ho Nghia Dung, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Cao Duc Phat and Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Hoang Tuan Anh. Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Sinh Hung will be the last one to take the floor at this questioning session.

Each minister will have 15 minutes to briefly report on results of dealing with issues from the previous sessions.

Minister of Finance Vu Van Ninh will present issues related to the responsibility and measures in implementing the State budget, controlling inflation and market prices, reduction in budget overspending and prevention of risks in Government and national debts.

Minister of Transport Ho Nghia Dung will touch upon issues of limitations as well as weaknesses in State management in carrying out transport projects which have caused wasteful losses.

Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Cao Duc Phat will address measures to protect the forests and natural resources, biodiversity and other mineral projects.

Minister of Culture, Information and Tourism Hoang Tuan Anh will respond to questions about the organisation of festivals beyond the limit, wastages in holding ceremonies to break the ground on projects or receive orders or medals, and State management over cultural and historical heritage sites.

On June 10, NA deputies will begin to spend two and a half days on their Q&A sessions.

Source: VOV

Source: QDND

Essential goods prices return to normal

In Uncategorized on March 24, 2010 at 4:45 am

Prices of essential goods have dropped dramatically following the return of many vendors to the city from holidays and supermarket promotions

Metro An Phu in district 2
Prices of chicken and duck eggs and pork have dropped at An Lac market in Ho Chi Minh City’s district. Fresh seafood prices have also fallen in  Hoa Binh Market in district 5, while broken rice was back down to VND8,500 a kilogram.
At retail markets Nguyen Dinh Chieu in district Phu Nhuan, Nguyen Van Troi, Ban Co in district 3, Ben Thanh in district 1, vegetable prices were less than last week. For instance, watercress has dropped from VND25, 000 a kilogram in Tet, to VND15,000.
According to market managers, over 70 per cent of essential items were cheaper.
Restaurants are also passing the price reduction on to customers.
Meanwhile supermarkets have been launching promotion campaigns to attract customers. German wholesale group Metro Cash & Carry in Ho Chi Minh City and the southern province of Dong Nai held a 50 percent stock clearance sale on kitchen utensils.
The deputy head of the city’s Department of Industry and Trade, Quach To Dung, said the price drop was to be expected with the resumption of normal business operations.

Source: SGGP Bookmark & Share