(Source: Vietnam Agriculture News) Draft decree on new fertilizer regulations must be completed in May. This was the command from Minister Nguyen Xuan Cuong in his working session with divisions of Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) on April 13th.

Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to quickly complete the draft decree amending Decree No. 202 on fertilizer monitoring in May 2017

            Emphasizing on steadiness and conciseness, the Minister requested that the draft decree to amend or replace Decree No. 202/2013/ND-CP on fertilizer monitoring must be completed no later than beginning of May for submission to other Ministries and industries for comments as well as for proposal to the Government for issuance in June.

A guiding circular won’t be necessary

            Presenting the draft Decree amending/replacing Decree No. 202 on fertilizer monitoring, Director General of Plant Protection Department (PPD) Mr Hoang Trung informed that in principles, the Crop Production Department has handed over all documentation and papers regarding fertilizer monitoring to the PPD. After obtaining preliminary comments from professional organizations, the PPD has published the draft decree on Government’s electronic portal and website of the MARD for public comments.

            According to Mr Hoang Trung, based on the limitations and benefits of Decree No. 202, the new Decree on fertilizer monitoring will inherit selectively from the old Decree and maintain all the appropriate points to create the most favorable conditions for enterprises.

            In the meantime, several regulations will be tightened to prevent illegal enterprises and low quality products. Specifically, the new Decree will strictly monitor the brand name, name tag, advertisement of secondary and trace element fertilizers, NPK fertilizers.

            Especially, to avoid influence on business operation of companies, the new Decree replacing Decree No. 202 will be implemented right after issuance without further guiding circular.

            Authorization and delegation of responsibility to provincial authorities

            According to Director General of the PPD Mr Hoang Trung – the division receiving national authorization for fertilizer monitoring from Crop Production Department (MARD) and Chemical Department (Ministry of Industry and Trade), an important reform of the draft Decree amending Decree No. 202 is that the responsibility to monitor fertilizer market will be delegated to local provincial authorities instead of their current no involvement as regulated in prevailing Decree.

Director General of PPD Mr Hoang Trung informed that in principles, the Crop Production Department has handed over all documentation and papers regarding fertilizer monitoring to the PPD. Also concerned about the testing of fertilizer, Deputy Director General of Crop Production Department Mr Nguyen Nhu Cuong worried that it would be impossible to control the number of fertilizer products in the list, because despite current strict monitoring and discouraging policies applied to fertilizer compared to plant protection medicines, the number of products in the list already reached 4,000; in the meantime, the demand and volume of fertilizer was much bigger than that of plant protection medicines.

            Also advocating the delegation of monitoring responsibility to provincial authorities, Deputy Director General of Crop Production Department Mr Nguyen Nhu Cuong added that beside such responsibility attachment, there would be a need to also delegate the license granting power to local authorities for small factories with low scale and capacity. However, the MARD must still manage the name tag, packaging and user guidance.

            Summarizing the working session, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Mr Nguyen Xuan Cuong requested that the PPD as the lead division in the compilation and building of the new Decree amending and replacing Decree No. 202 on fertilizer monitoring need to consider reasonable comments from experts, authorities, enterprises and associations.

            The non-consensual items must be discussed and debated on principles that final decision will be made by the PPD, who would also be attached to future monitoring responsibility.

            Minister Mr Nguyen Xuan Cuong noted that in the transition period, it would be necessary to consider the short term and long term needs so that the Decree would be answering practical requirements, given that sometimes it might be tempting yet inappropriate to apply the most advanced monitoring model in the world.

            Besides, the new Decree must be in line with the roadmap towards a clean, organic and smart agriculture industry; must accept international products if they are beneficial to farmers and the country. Further, socialization should be applied in as many stages as possible on conditions that the permission granting for socializing organizations must be well monitored.

            “The PPD needs to swiftly organize 3 seminars in 3 regions the North, the Middle and the South this April to obtain public comments from professional organizations, enterprises, and provincial authorities, which should be followed by a private session with Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) so that the draft Decree must be completed in May the latest for submission to Ministries and industries for comments prior to official proposal to the Government for issuance in June 2017”, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Mr Nguyen Xuan Cuong commanded.

            + According to Director General of Legal Department Ms Nguyen Thi Kim Anh, in case the new Decree requires that the fertilizers in the list need to be tested, and that an appraisal committee must be formed prior to certifying and market release permission granting, there should be regulations on the responsibility of the committee, because currently the committee only acts as an advisory party and is not responsible for the products in the market.

            + According to Deputy Director General of Science, Technology and Environment Department Mr Pham Dong Quang, every type of fertilizers must be tested, however enterprises should carry out the testing themselves at socialized centers rather than at a mandatory regulated center.

14/04/2017
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