Through a systematic approach of progressively enhancing social and economic infrastructure, Tay Ninh province has adeptly employed government support mechanisms and policies, while also harnessing community engagement and contributions to transform rural landscapes, foster economic growth, and enhance the well-being of its residents.
Tay Ninh province has achieved remarkable socioeconomic progress, transforming rural areas and improving their residents’ well-being
After a decade of dedicated implementation of the National Target Program for New Rural Development, in tandem with the collective endeavors of the administrative apparatus and civic organizations, and with unwavering support from the local populace, Tay Ninh province has realized significant strides in socioeconomic development, revitalizing rural environments and elevating the living standards and overall quality of life in its rural communities.
Improving rural socioeconomic infrastructure
As of June 30, 2023, as reported by the Provincial People's Committee, Tay Ninh province had made significant strides in its commitment to new rural development standards. Out of 71 communes, 61 had received certification, demonstrating an impressive 85.9% compliance rate. Moreover, 17 communes had successfully reached advanced new rural development standards, while two communes excelled in meeting exemplary new rural development criteria. On average, each commune achieved 18 new rural development standards, effectively reaching 94.7% of the established plan.
It is worth highlighting that the province has strategically invested in and concurrently developed social and economic infrastructure within rural areas to ensure seamless connectivity between rural and urban zones. An ambitious plan is to invest in 4,237.76 km of rural roads during 2021-2025, an increase of 1,094.96 km from the previous 2016-2020 period, with the construction of 3,007.55 km of new roads and the repair and restoration of 1,230.206 km. Presently, 61 out of 71 communes meet the specified traffic criteria. Tay Ninh province has also completed and enhanced the quality of irrigation systems and disaster prevention and control facilities at the commune and district levels. Over 80% of agricultural land areas within communes are now actively irrigated and drained. The province has diligently implemented natural disaster prevention and control measures with available local resources, culminating in the satisfaction of Criterion 3 in all 71 communes. Additionally, the power grid has been meticulously restored and upgraded to meet exacting standards for safety, reliability, stability and aesthetics, with all 71 communes now meeting Criterion 4 for electricity.
The rural water supply network has continued to receive investments to uphold water quality standards, resulting in over 20,800 households accessing clean water services by the end of 2022. A noteworthy 99.4% of rural residents now have access to hygienic water, and 66% of rural households enjoy water that complies with national quality standards.
Many production models have transitioned toward high-tech agriculture, forming integrated production chains. The promotion of the One Commune One Product (OCOP) Program has yielded encouraging results, with 68 OCOP products achieving a 3-star rating or higher.
Furthermore, ongoing investments have been directed toward medical, educational and cultural infrastructure, aligning with prescribed standards. Communes are equipped with entertainment and sports venues, and the rural environment has been elevated to a higher-class standard. Importantly, the province has maintained and ensured political security, social order and safety.
Tay Ninh province, with a conducive climate and soil, is ideal for cultivating durian trees
Addressing shortcomings and limitations
Mr. Truong Tan Dat, Deputy Director of the Tay Ninh Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, acknowledged that the progress of the implementation of the National Target Program on New Rural Development in the province for the 2021-2025 period falls behind the set targets. Several infrastructure projects have suffered from irregular maintenance, leading to their deterioration. Maintaining the standard quality after reaching it has proven to be a challenge. There is a notable scarcity of investment resources mobilized for essential infrastructure construction, especially corporate investments in agriculture and rural development.
Mr. Dat has further noted that the new rural development standards set for the 2021-2025 period encompass an increase in indicators, criteria and standard requirements at all levels. Some of these criteria, particularly those at the central level, are deemed overly ambitious and detached from the practical realities on the ground. Consequently, many localities have not been able to meet the 2021-2025 criteria after previously achieving the new rural development and advanced new rural development standards.
In light of a commune survey conducted by the Provincial People's Council, it has been revealed that certain indicators and criteria related to rural development and advanced rural development lack sustainability. The execution, appraisal, and evaluation of these standards are inadequate. For instance, educational institutions at all levels are expected to meet specific physical standards, and most notably, have functional rooms and multi-purpose buildings for physical training and sports. However, the survey indicates that the majority of schools were constructed before 2020 when such criteria were not in place.
The access to centralized water supply systems remains limited, with only 12.1% of households enjoying this convenience. Many areas lack access to centralized water supply systems, forcing residents to rely on wells and water filters. Additionally, the per capita income criteria appear high in some communes due to land sales, while the multidimensional poverty rate remains relatively high for the 2021-2025 period. The review suggests that the identification of poor households is inconsistent in some places, with certain localities intentionally transferring poor households to socially protected categories to reduce the reported poverty rate.
In the foreseeable future, Tay Ninh envisions a gradual resolution of prevailing challenges and constraints to foster the development of modern, well-organized rural areas. This endeavor seeks to elevate the standard of living for farmers and rural residents while simultaneously infusing sustainable value into the countryside during this new era.
The province is committed to enhancing the comprehensive mechanization and automation of agricultural processes, spanning from production to harvesting, preservation, and processing across the entire value chain. Priority attention will be directed toward pivotal agricultural products. Tay Ninh aims to facilitate and support farmers in the adoption of cutting-edge mechanical equipment, greenhouses, net houses, and state-of-the-art livestock facilities. This initiative is designed to elevate the efficiency and income derived from agricultural activities. Furthermore, it aims to cultivate a cadre of proficient farmers, thereby empowering them to foster the growth of the agricultural and cooperative sectors.
The Provincial People's Committee has launched an ambitious plan for the execution of the sustainable agricultural and rural development strategy for the period 2021-2030, with a forward-looking vision extending to 2050. This strategic framework places significant emphasis on the concurrent development of rural areas and tourism. In line with this strategy, Tay Ninh has committed to implementing seven distinct models for rural tourism development between 2021 and 2025.
By Do Ngoc, Vietnam Business Forum