From Thanh Nien News

Photo from Thanh Nien News

New Zealand's Minister for Food Safety and Associate Minister for Primary Industries Jo Goodhew is visiting Vietnam from July 27-30 to boost bilateral cooperation in food safety.

The key objective of the visit is to review existing cooperation between New Zealand and Vietnam in the critical area of food safety and discuss opportunities to expand this in future, the New Zealand Embassy in Vietnam said in a statement.

“New Zealand and Vietnam have been cooperating in the agriculture and food safety space for many years, across a wide-variety of activities,” Goodhew said.

“This Food Safety Cooperation Arrangement I recently signed with Minister Phat is an excellent opportunity to take this cooperation to the next level.”

“We are very keen to share our experiences with Vietnam on food safety and use this to increase food safety outcomes and grow trade between our two countries and with the rest of the world”, she said.

Goodhew’s visit was to follow Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung’s official visit to New Zealand in March 2015, during which a Food Safety Cooperation Arrangement was signed by Goodhew and Vietnam’s Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Cao Duc Phat.

During her visit to Vietnam, Goodhew will meet with Phat to discuss implementation of the arrangement.

She will also meet with Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam to discuss Vietnam’s multi-agency approach to food safety and the possible application of new models of cooperation between New Zealand and Vietnam on food safety.

Goodhew will then travel to Binh Dinh Province to work with local authorities, experts and farmers to assess the outcomes of New Zealand’s existing development projects in Binh Dinh and review the design of new food safety-related development assistance projects being planned.

In HCMC, Goodhew will meet business contacts from the agriculture and forestry sectors.

According to the New Zealand Embassy, relationship between Vietnam and New Zealand has grown significantly in the last 10 years with close cooperation in agriculture, education, development assistance and defense.

In 2009, New Zealand and Vietnam signed a Comprehensive Partnership Agreement and during Prime Minister Dung’s visit to New Zealand in March 2015, the two countries agreed to further deepen and intensify the existing comprehensive partnership toward the establishment of a strategic partnership.

Keywords: food safety, New Zealand, Vietnam