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Vietnam Today

Public debt remains within limits

Released at: 11:45, 24/09/2015

Public debt remains within limits

Workshop evaluating Public Debt Management Law hears of debt accrued and repaid.

by Son Ho

The Ministry of Finance and the World Bank have held an Evaluation Workshop on the Public Debt Management Law after five years of implementation, where figures and an evaluation of public debt were released.

Public debt at the end of 2014 stood at VND2.347 trillion ($104.39 million), equal to 59.6 per cent of GDP. It is estimated that by the end of this year it will be equal to 62.3 per cent, which is still within the limit established by the National Assembly of 65 per cent.

Debt repayment by the government in 2014 was estimated at VND141.52 trillion ($6.29 billion), for a ratio against State budget revenue of 13.8 per cent. According to Mr. Truong Hung Long, Head of the Department of Debt Management and External Finance at the Ministry of Finance it is important to keep track of debt repayments, which contribute to strengthening national credit.

In the 2010-2015 period the total debt incurred to balance the State budget for development and investment reached more than VND1.4 trillion ($62.27 million), or 7 per cent of GDP each year and increasing 14 per cent annually on average.

Mr. Long also pointed to other issues, such as the size of public debt not being consistent with international practice, overlapping between debts, the targets of public debt, professional management of debt, and the relationship between public debt management and fiscal policies, among others.

Ms. Victoria Kwakwa, the World Bank’s Country Director for Vietnam, said that after five years of implementation Vietnam needs to apply international experience gradually and strengthen fiscal policy to ensure efficient public debt management. The World Bank stands ready, she added, to provide technical assistance to the Ministry of Finance to improve the efficiency of public debt management and ensure national financial security.

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