Drought forces south-central provinces to halt crop cultivation

The agricultural and rural development departments in three southern central provinces said they were not planting the summer-autumn rice and several crops due to prolonged drought.

The three provinces are Khanh Hoa, Ninh Thuan and Phu Yen.

Director of the Irrigation Construction Company in Ninh Thuan province Pham Van Huong said the volume of water in 20 reservoirs across the province was about 17 million cubic metres, accounting for nine percent of their total capacity.

Deputy Director of the Agriculture and Rural Development department Pham Quang Thu said the province was also not planting about 10,000ha of the summer-autumn rice crop because of drought.

Khanh Hoa is also not planting rice in 13,600ha.

Deputy Chairman of the People’s Committee Nguyen Ngoc Son said the province had never suffered a hard drought like this in the past 10 years.

The province has not received any rain over the past few months, Son said.

Suoi Hanh, the largest reservoir of Cam Ranh City, is lying empty.

Thousands of hectares of mango trees are in danger due to the water shortage.

About 3,000ha of agricultural land in Phu Yen province cannot be cultivated because of prolonged drought.

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