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Closer civil defence cooperation with Viet Nam

Hon Rick Barker
Minister of Civil Defence

28 Feburary 2008 Media Statement

Closer civil defence cooperation with Viet Nam

Closer cooperation on civil defence matters has been a key theme in discussions between Civil Defence Minister, Rick Barker and Vietnamese Ministers and civil defence experts.

At a meeting with Vice-Minister Dao Xuan Hoc, of the Central Committee for Flood and Storm Control, Mr Barker invited the Vice-Minister and his colleagues to visit New Zealand and observe a civil defence exercise. He also undertook to share civil defence education material developed in New Zealand – Get Ready Get Thru and What’s the Plan Stan?

“Helping to build stronger more resilient communities through international cooperation and the sharing of knowledge will ultimately benefit both New Zealand and Viet Nam,” Mr Barker said.

“The Indonesian tsunami and Hurricane Katrina have been a wake-up call for the world. These events show that all nations are vulnerable to natural disasters. New Zealand is keen to work with other nations in our region to share information and approaches so we can all be more resilient and prepared. It’s important to have plans in place, but it’s even more important to practice implementing them.

Mr Barker also visited the Viet Nam Academy of Science and Technology and was briefed on cooperation with GNS Science. GNS Science is undertaking a tsunami hazard, risk and preparedness project with the Academy’s Institute of Geophysics funded by a $580,000 grant from NZAID. He was briefed on the project and toured the Earthquake Information and Tsunami Warning Centre established with advice from GNS scientists. The Academy and GNS Science will shortly sign a memorandum of understanding that will provide a basis for further scientific cooperation between Viet Nam and New Zealand.

“I welcome the growing cooperation between Viet Nam and New Zealand and congratulated the Institute on establishing its Earthquake Information and Tsunami Warning Centre,” Mr Barker said.

In addition the Minister met with the National Committee on Search and Rescue of Viet Nam’s Ministry of Defence where New Zealand’s strengths in urban search and rescue were discussed.


ENDS

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