|Soldiers and volunteers build a rural road in northern mountainous Lao Cai Province. — VNA/VNS Photo Doan Tan
HA NOI (VNS) — International NGOs will fund programmes and development projects worth US$200 million in mountainous and ethnic minority areas in the next three years.
The news came at a conference yesterday co-organised by the Committee for Ethnic Minority Affairs and the Viet Nam Union of Friendship Organisation. It aimed to promote investment in and development aid for the disenfranchised communities. The foreign NGOs will carry out 261 different projects in the $200-million deal.
The telecom group Viettel and Vietnam Joint Stock Commercial Bank for Industry and Trade (Vietinbank) also pledged to provide the regions VND10.2 trillion ($480 million) in 2015.
Participants heard a report on Viet Nam's socio-economic development and policies aimed at attracting investment and foreign aid for the mountain areas. They also gave recommendations on how the Government should co-operate with international organisations to help the ethnic minority and mountainous regions develop.
Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc thanked countries and international organisations for their comprehensive assistance. He said he hoped the poverty-reduction programmes would receive more help in the future.
The country must devise proper policies so it can pool resources from the State, development partners and communities to best help the regions upgrade their transportation infrastructure, reduce poverty and ensure social welfare, Phuc said.
Advanced technology in the agro-forestry sector would help the country meet these goals, he said. Involved parties should focus on promoting ecotourism, culture, history, mining and mineral processing, Phuc said. They should also build irrigation projects associated with hydroelectric power plants, he said.
Ethnic minority and mountainous areas nationwide attracted investment worth $3.9 billion so far this year. But these regions still face many challenges, such as underdeveloped infrastructure, poor quality of human resources and a high number of poor. — VNS