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Vietnam Today

Corruption costs developing countries $20-40 billion each year

Released at: 08:11, 22/01/2015

Corruption costs developing countries $20-40 billion each year

Vietnam second on World Bank list for complaints about corruption.

by Minh Tuyet

Developing countries lose about $20-40 billion every year to bribery and corruption, Ms. Conchita Carpio Morales, a member of an inspection agency in the Philippines, told a conference on enhancing management to boost development in Vietnam.

She also appealed to governments to adopt stronger measures to prevent corruption and provide the conditions for sustainable development.

East Asia and Pacific countries ranks second after Africa in having the most fraud and corruption, said Mr. Anders Hjorth Agerskov, a representative of World Bank.

On the list of the Top 20 countries with the most complaints about bribery and corruption, according to the World Bank, Vietnam ranks second, just after India, especially in traffic and water supply, followed by agriculture and energy.

“The figures probably don’t tell the exact story but should still be considered,” Mr. Agerskov said.

Experts said that the management of ODA projects was one of the biggest problems facing Vietnam. For 30 years Vietnam has received commitments in excess of $80 billion, going to infrastructure projects such as harbors, airports and roads in particular. The extent of fraud and corruption in ODA use are of concern to Vietnamese management agencies and sponsors alike.

A representative from the Government Inspectorate said that ODA projects were complicated, large-scale projects that are long-term in nature and involve many sectors. The scope for corruption is therefore very high.

A major factor creating fraud in ODA projects is the lack of knowledge among local leaders about the capital source, he said. Many local leaders believe that ODA never has to be repaid and so pay inadequate attention to its use.

Such thinking, while changing, has led to a situation where localities lobby to receive ODA funds for unnecessary projects or fail to manage the capital source properly.

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