Cold weather kills 60,000 cattle in Vietnam
HANOI - An ongoing record-long spell of cold weather in Vietnam's northern region, which started on January 14, has killed nearly 60,000 cattle, mainly bull and buffalo calves, local press reported Monday.
By February 17, the spell had killed a total of 59,962 cattle in the region, including 7,349 in Ha Giang province, 6,400 in Lao Cai and 5,571 in Bac Can province, Pioneer newspaper quoted Hoang Kim Giao, director of the Animal Husbandry Department under the Vietnamese Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, as saying.
The cold weather also killed 104 hectares out of 260,000 hectares of the Winter-Spring crop in the Northern region, mainly in Thanh Hoa province, Nghe An province and Hai Phong city.
The Vietnamese government has agreed in principle with the ministry's proposal on providing local farmers with a total financial assistance of nearly 149 billion Vietnamese dong (9.3 million US dollars), Vietnam Agriculture newspaper reported.
By February 17, the ongoing spell has lasted for 35 days, breaking the 31-day record in 1989, Youth newspaper quoted Bui Minh Tang, director of the National Center for Hydrometeorology Forecast, as saying.
During the spell, forecast to end in the next few days, the temperature has sometimes decreased to below 10 Celsius degrees in many northern localities. And temperature of minus two degrees Celsius has been recorded in some areas in the two border provinces of Lao Cai and Lang Son.
Xinhua - February 18, 2008.