HA NOI — Japanese and Vietnamese experts compared notes on the organisational structures and operations of local governments at a meeting in Ha Noi on Thursday and Friday.
Participants shared information on the roles of local authorities and central governments, pinpointing areas in need of reform in the administration of local authorities. They examined the model of local government in Japan and discussed how to build a responsible local administration and create conditions for the public to participate and exercise their rights through both representative and direct democracy.
The session was jointly organised by the Vietnamese Ministry of Home Affairs and the Japanese Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, with support from Japan's Council of Local Authorities for International Relations in Singapore and the Japan International Cooperation Agency.
The Ministry of Home Affairs' Department of Local Administration admitted that local government in Viet Nam remained cumbersome and that no regulations governed the division of authority between local governments and the central government.
The department said it was necessary to reform and reorganise local authorities in Viet Nam to heighten the role and responsibility of the head of the administrative apparatus while strengthening democracy in People's Committees and improving the quality of the democratic system of representation through the National Assembly and People's Councils at all levels, as well as promoting direct democracy.
The seminar was provided as a basis for local governments in both countries to study further possible co-operative ties in the future. — VNS