The FINANCIAL -- The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved a new partnership strategy for Viet Nam to support the country’s recently launched Socio-Economic Development Plan 2016–2020 by fostering more inclusive and environmentally sustainable growth.
The Viet Nam Country Partnership Strategy (CPS), 2016-2020 was prepared against a backdrop of impressive economic and social gains. Having reached lower-middle income status in 2010, Viet Nam has made rapid progress against poverty reduction and in lifting the quality of health and education, according to ADB.
But Viet Nam is starting to face new and more complex challenges. Growth is creating environmental damage and the country is highly exposed to climate change. Previously rapid growth in the working age population is starting to fall and pockets of poverty still remain, particularly in remote and rural regions.
“To help the government address these challenges, ADB will support investments to achieve three key outcomes,” said Eric Sidgwick, ADB Country Director for Viet Nam. “These will be to promote job creation and competitiveness, to increase the inclusiveness of infrastructure and service delivery, and to improve environmental sustainability and climate change responses.”
The CPS highlights that Viet Nam’s transition from lower-middle income status to middle-income status requires improvements in the efficiency of public expenditure and greater private sector investment. ADB will promote both, and help leverage private sector investment through public–private partnerships, to improve efficiency and service delivery to citizens and gain access to new expertise and technology. ADB will also support sustainable natural resource use as well as climate change adaptation and mitigation measures to respond to the heightened risks facing the country.
“Sharing our knowledge will also play a key role in the new CPS, with a particular focus on strengthening the business enabling environment, promoting fiscal transparency and public accountability, and fostering integrated and green urban infrastructure,” added Mr. Sidgwick.
The CPS proposes to maintain ADB lending at around $1 billion per annum while adopting measures to improve the readiness and quality of projects being supported, as well as the implementation of existing projects. ADB stands ready to scale-up its assistance, should additional resources be requested by government.