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May 19, 2024 / 11:19

Denmark intensifies agriculture cooperation with Vietnam

Vietnam is an important market for Danish exports and an attractive destination for Danish agricultural businesses.

The visit paid to Vietnam by Denmark’s Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries, Jacob Jensen, aims to intensify cooperation in agriculture – one of the key pillars in the bilateral Green Strategic Partnership

The visit took place earlier this week, with a group of Danish agri-food companies with advanced technology and know-how on sustainability and green transition, intensifying high-level policy dialogue with Vietnamese counterparts with a focus on a more sustainable food production and a resource-efficient supply chain.

 Vietnamese Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Le Minh Hoan at the meeting with his Danish counterpart. Photos: Embassy of Denmark in Hanoi 

At the meeting with Le Minh Hoan, Vietnamese Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), Minister Jensen signed a Memorandum of Understanding extending the government-to-government cooperation. In the coming years, the cooperation will have increased focus on the green transition of food and agricultural production, aiming to promote a more sustainable and resilient food system.

Minister Jensen shared that Denmark's green transition in sustainable food production has led to the development of strong, innovative methods and approaches throughout the value chain, which boost production yield and improve product quality but at the same time consume less water and energy.

“We look forward to sharing these insights and inspiring further collaboration with our Vietnamese partners. Our agreement is a strong testament to our fruitful cooperation where the two ministries do not only share common needs and interests but more importantly a common goal and vision: a sustainable and resilient food system’ says Jacob Jensen, Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries of Denmark,” stated the minister.   

  Denmark’s Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries, Jacob Jensen, at the meeting in Hanoi this week.   

During his visit, a workshop on Antimicrobial Resistance in agriculture and aquaculture was held with the attendance of the Danish minister. As antimicrobial resistance is a big threat to public health and human health nowadays, Danish experts shared experiences and know-how approaches with Vietnamese partners

Vietnam is an attractive destination for Danish businesses in the agricultural sector. At present, Denmark has been one of the EU countries with the highest export per capita to Vietnam and the agri-food sector constitutes approximately half of the total Danish exports to Vietnam.

“Vietnam has become an important and attractive market for Danish businesses and investors. Although Vietnam and Denmark are geographically very far from each other, we are facing many of the same challenges and we have to continue working together to find ways to use resources effectively. In a smart way to increase competitiveness and sustainability” added Minister Jensen.

On his trip to the South of Vietnam, Minister Jensen visited Food Bank Vietnam, an important partner in the efforts to combat food waste and food loss. He also paid site visits to a catfish aqua farm in Tien Giang and an aqua-feed factory in Ben Tre, where close partnerships between Vietnamese and Danish research institutions and companies promote the use of new green technologies and solutions for sustainable aquaculture production in Vietnam.

Also during the visit, the minister delivered a keynote speech at the seminar on “Sustainable agri-food production – Danish innovative technologies and financing opportunities”. The seminar provided a forum to connect and facilitate the exchange of experiences, technologies, financing, and business opportunities between authorities, local decision-makers, sector managers as well as Danish and Vietnamese entrepreneurs.   

 The two sides ink an MoU on agriculture.

Long-term partnership 

Minister Jensen’s trip to Vietnam is the second Danish high-level visit within just two months. Notably, the visits have been accompanied by a group of Danish companies and producers who own world-leading solutions in food production and processing, storage, optimizing the use of food and agriculture resources, drainage, and water techniques.

The cooperation in agriculture is a crucial part of the Green Strategic Partnership launched by the two Prime Ministers last November, where the two countries have committed to promoting green transition and green growth, supporting Vietnam in building a green economy and fulfilling the country’s commitment to achieve net-zero emission by 2050.

Therefore, this has been an important track of the Strategic Sector Cooperation (SSC) Food program.

The Strategic Sector Cooperation (SSC) is a partnership between a Danish public authority (DPA) and its Vietnamese partner Ministry. The two partner ministries have had joint missions to boost the DPA’s support with expertise and transfer of Danish know-how and experiences relevant to local priority issues, conditions, and needs. The SSC aims to promote sustainable and responsible growth, jobs, and prosperity in Vietnam and eventually create opportunities for Danish businesses. 

 Minister Jensen (C) and Danish Ambassador to Vietnam Nicolai Prytz (L) at the workshop. 

Vietnam and Denmark have developed a close and long-term bilateral relationship on food safety since 2017 with a focus on animal feed and food safety.

The SSC Food program between Vietnam and Denmark has been implemented by the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration (DVFA) and the Vietnamese Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD).

The first phase of the program focused on improving framework conditions for animal feed production through the capacity development of government officials and on the legislative framework for the prudent use of veterinary drugs.

In phase 2, which ran from April 2020 to April 2024, the main themes of cooperation are enhancing capacity across various stages of the food chain from farm to fork, combating anti-microbial resistance (AMR), feed control and traceability, and recall of unsafe food.