Photo: Viet Tuan
Forecasts reaffirmed as ADB President visits Vietnam.
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has reaffirmed its forecast of economic growth of 6.7 per cent for Vietnam in 2016; the same rate as in 2015, despite Vietnam continuing to experience severe drought. Growth is also projected to be a robust 6.5 per cent in 2017. Inflation for this year is predicted to be 3 per cent; significantly higher than the 0.6 per cent recorded in 2015.
ADB made the predictions during the visit by ADB President Takehiko Nakao to Vietnam. He also said that the bank would continue its assistance to the government through sovereign lending of about $1 billion annually, as ADB is preparing a new Country Partnership Strategy for the 2016-2020 period.
The central goal of the strategy is to help Vietnam promote more inclusive and environmentally sustainable economic growth, in alignment with its Socio-Economic Development Plan 2016-2020 and in cooperation with developments partners. “It is crucial that Vietnam continue pursuing sound economic policies and deepen structural reforms,” Mr. Nakao said.
He also indicated that Vietnam should promote more inclusive and environmentally sustainable economic growth. “It is particularly important to reform State-owned enterprises by reducing State ownership, improving corporate governance, and strengthening financial performance,” he said. “The government also needs to resolve non-performing loans, strengthen tax revenues and improve the efficiency of public expenditure.”
The ADB will continue to accompany Vietnam in pursuing sustainable goals through support on healthcare and education projects. “ADB will provide assistance in expanding community healthcare centers and broadening health insurance coverage from the current 76 per cent,” he said. “In education, ADB will deepen its support to improve the quality of secondary education and extend support to technical and vocational education and training.”
In infrastructure, the ADB will streamline approval processes, facilitate implementation, and delegate more authority to resident missions. It will also adjust its project designs and procurement procedures to promote the use of cleaner and more advanced technologies to combat climate change, demonstrate development impacts and lower lifecycles costs, including maintenance and sustainability of infrastructure. ADB also support public-private partnerships (PPPs) for its projects in Vietnam.
Mr. Nakao met with State President Tran Dai Quang, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc and other government members and confirmed the continuation of the partnership between the bank and the country. Mr. Nakao also pledged to provide assistance to Vietnam’s private sector, as it has not received support to the same level as in other countries in the region, such as Myanmar.