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PM voices gratitude for ODA, vows prudent management

Update: October, 18/2013 - 10:09

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung yesterday affirmed the Government's gratitude and sound management of official development assistance (ODA) from the international community.—VNA/VNS Photo

HA NOI (VNS) — Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung yesterday affirmed the Government's gratitude and sound management of official development assistance (ODA) from the international community.

Addressing a meeting held in Ha Noi to commemorate the 20th anniversary of development ties between Viet Nam and international donors, the Prime Minister pledged that Viet Nam would ensure donor trust.

The PM said the influx of capital had significantly contributed to Viet Nam's social and economic achievements, particularly in infrastructure, healthcare, education and training, agricultural development, poverty reduction, environmental protection and its response to climate change.

The Government leader added that ODA programmes had created a favourable environment for trade, investment and private sector development; and facilitated the nation's integration into the global economy.

Viet Nam currently pursues a 2011-20 development strategy, focusing on institutional reform, comprehensive infrastructure development and human resource development in line with rapid and sustainable growth models.

PM Dung said the Vietnamese Government had mobilised internal resources and invited the participation from the public and private sectors to corral support from the international community.

The Prime Minister also highlighted the importance of ODA in achieving development priorities through national target programmes, infrastructure development projects, policy making and institutional development, capacity building, healthcare and environmental sustainability.

According to a report released at the meeting, findings showed donor support for the Government's development policy had helped improve confidence and bring foreign businesses and investors to Viet Nam.

Foreign direct investment (FDI) contributed 2 per cent to Viet Nam's gross domestic product (GDP) in 1992, with the figure surging rapidly to 18.97 per cent last year, the report said.

At the meeting, representatives from the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank and other donors praised Viet Nam's progress, highlighting the nation's achievements in poverty reduction from the past two decades and the co-operation between the Vietnamese Government and donors.

World Bank Country Director in Viet Nam Victoria Kwakwa said that Viet Nam had recorded gigantic development achievements over the past two decades.

"In 1993, Viet Nam was one of the poorest countries in the world with income per capita of about $100 and low indicators of social progress. Today Viet Nam is an emerging middle income country with a $154 billion economy and income per capita of around $1,700," she said.

"Income poverty has declined from 58 per cent in 1993 to about 10 per cent in 2012 with over 30 million people lifted out of poverty," she added.

"Indicators of social welfare are now better than most other countries at similar levels of per capita income and comparable even to some countries with higher incomes," she said, citing the better education available for the majority of locals.

According to Pratibha Mehta, UN Resident Co-ordinator in Viet Nam, the country's progress had been recognised globally and served as an encouragement for other nations.

She noted, however, that despite its achievements, Viet Nam still faced a lot of challenges ahead and needs continued and strong support from international development partners.

She also spoke highly of the Vietnamese Government's efforts to define these challenges and include solutions to them in the country's socio-economic development plans.

The UN would continue to co-ordinate with relevant parties in searching aid sources in order to help the country improve public financial management and use the capital more effectively, she stressed.

ODA received by Viet Nam from 1993 to 2012 amounted to $80 billion, according to the Ministry of Planning and Investment. — VNS

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