Providing farmers with the right skills means feeding the world

Vietnam’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) in close coordination with Vietnam’s Directorate for Vocational Education and Training (DVET), under the framework of the Russian Federation funded project ‘Applying the G20 Training Strategy: A partnership of the ILO and the Russian Federation‘ organized a consultation workshop and a technical meeting to report the preliminary results of the ‘Skills for Trade and Economic Diversification‘ methodological analysis currently being undertaken in the Vietnamese Agriculture sector.

Article | Ha Noi, Viet Nam | 17 May 2018
Ha Noi, Viet Nam (ILO NEWS) As a continuation of the work started in November 2017 under the framework of the ‘Applying the G20 Training Strategy: A partnership of the ILO and the Russian Federation‘ Viet Nam’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) in close coordination with Viet Nam’s Directorate for Vocational Education and Training (DVET) organized a consultation workshop to discuss the Skills for Trade and Economic Diversification (STED) methodological analysis currently being undertaken in the country. In Viet Nam, the Project is working on implementing STED for the Agriculture sector, specifically working on the livestock sub-sector.

The 1-day consultation workshop and the subsequent technical meeting with the Project’s Agriculture Working Group (WG) and other interested stakeholders focused on reporting the current findings of the WG after having undertaken a survey in two provinces of Viet Nam – Hanoi and Ha Nam – and presently being carried out in Vinh Phuc and Phu Tho. 84 pig farms and related industries were surveyed to understand the skills needs of the sub-sector towards producing an analytical report on the sub-sector's skills needs. The report is expected to recommend the emphasis of potential pilot activities under the G20TS and other TVET reform and Skills Development projects in the sub-sector.

The research aims to deliver a thorough understanding of the current situation of the sub-sector as a whole. More specifically survey results are already providing valuable information on the cost of production, current organization of Human Resources and financial management, the existing legal framework impacting the sector and farmers’ knowledge of it, labour composition of the farms, and the current perception of pig farmers of the sub-sector’s skills needs, among others.

During the workshop, representatives of government, agriculture sector representatives, farmers and TVET institutions shared their views regarding the best approaches to improve the sub-sector’s competitiveness, based on their experience and on the survey’s anticipated results. Notwithstanding the challenges being encountered, all participants agreed that competitiveness and productivity can only be achieved through labour force up-skilling and empowerment.

Labour productivity is a reflection of the skills of the labour force."

Mr Tran Quoi Huy, Chief, DVET

Based on challenges that the sector had to overcome during past years, a focus on helping students and farmers to gain a better understanding of the importance of focusing on primary and secondary meat products instead of limiting the training to on-farm production was highlighted as a potentially beneficial adjustment in the sector’s training curriculum. Providing students with examples and tools used internationally, greening the sector towards improving global competitiveness, the importance of marketing and processing skills and other related skills to be used over the whole value chain, were also emphasized and discussed.

ILO’s STED expert also mentioned that a sector-specific skills strategy would help farmers to become more productive and reiterated the strong commitment of the ILO on walking hand by hand with Vietnamese constituents and other partners towards designing and applying a Vietnamese Skills Development process for the sector. “Viet Nam has natural advantage to become more competitive in the Agriculture sector and to increase its gains when trading in the global pig meat exporting market”. Con Gregg, Senior STED Expert, ILO

Viet Nam has natural advantage to become more competitive in the Agriculture sector and to increase its gains when trading in the global pig meat exporting market."

Con Gregg, Senior STED Expert, ILO
The ILO’s STED methodology provides a strategic perspective onskills while analysing businesses’ environment. STED looks at gaps in industries and business and draws conclusions on the skills needed to overcome current challenges towards providing the sub-sector with the right tools to become more competitive and successful vis-à-vis international markets. The ILO emphasised that developing the right skills in the right sectors means that we are in the right path to development being able to create more employment and decent jobs for all women and men.

The WG will continue the survey and subsequent analysis, which will be finalized by the summer this year and will work on the production of a STED analytic report of the sub-sector, which will include recommendations for implementation. The recommendations will be presented at a validation workshop by the end of the summer 2018 and delivered to social partners in the country for follow up and potential execution.

For additional information on the G20TS Project please visit our webpage at /g20ts .