New Zealand-funded project helps ensure dam safety

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development on April 24 launched a project to ensure the safety of dams in Vietnam, which is funded by the Government of New Zealand. 

Illustrative Photo

Illustrative Photo

Vietnam is one of countries vulnerable to natural disasters, especially storms and floods which cause serious damage in humans and assets, said Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Ha Cong Tuan.

Amidst climate change, extreme weather phenomena become more and more complicated, causing negative impacts, he noted.

He added that Vietnam is also facing difficulties in operating and managing flood prevention systems in river basins as well as in ensuring dam safety.

The country has about 7,000 water reservoirs, with many of them have been downgrading, failing to meet requirements of safety in the operation process. 

Many dam failures and incidents have been reported in the country in recent years, causing serious human and property losses in lower areas. This poses an urgent need for efforts made by the Government and localities to better ensure dam safety and manage natural disasters. 

Along with a similar project funded by the World Bank, the project is hoped to help Vietnam in improvement of dam quality and operation of dams and water reservoirs, thus reducing damage caused by natural disasters. 

According to Tuan, trade between Vietnam and New Zealand saw strong growth in recent times, hitting $1.15 billion  in 2016, doubling the figure recorded about five years ago. 

New Zealand has provided official development assistance to Vietnam in many projects, especially in agriculture and natural disaster risk management, Tuan added.

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