The World Bank will provide Vietnam over $3.8 billion in concessional loan to help improve lives of local people, including the extreme poor, the bank's President Jim Yong Kim said Thursday during his visit to Hanoi.
The financing would be made through IDA, the bank's fund for the poorest countries, in the next three years, Kim said at a press briefing in Hanoi.
Vietnam is now the second largest IDA recipient.
WB would conduct a joint study with the government to look at steps the country needs to take to become a modern industrialized country in a single generation, Kim said.
The study would identify the changes Vietnam needs to make to build sustainable and inclusive growth and join the ranks of high-income countries.
It would look at how Vietnam could boost trade and competitiveness and improve the business and investment climate to attract more foreign and domestic private investment. It will also examine the policies and actions Vietnam will need to build economic sustainability, reform its institutions and create more equality and opportunities for all people.
“Vietnam’s leadership can improve the lives of the Vietnamese people even more if they improve the efficiency and competitiveness of its economy and create the conditions for the private sector to become a driving force for job creation, innovation and high-productivity growth that benefits every ones,” he said.
Vietnam has made remarkable progress in reducing poverty, according to WB. The percentage of people living in poverty dropped from almost 60 percent in the 1990s to under 10 percent today. Vietnam’s growth rate has averaged 6.4 percent per year for the last decade, but it has begun to slowly recently.
“Vietnam can return to higher rates of growth if it makes the bold reforms needed in the financial sector and in state-owned enterprises with greater transparency and accountability,” Kim said. “The World Bank Group is committed to supporting Vietnam as it moves ahead with these tough reforms and we truly appreciate our long and trusted relationship with Vietnam.”
Vietnam’s economy expanded 5.18 percent in the first half from a year earlier.