VietNamNet Bridge – The British government has pledged to give non-refundable aid of 50 million British pounds (roughly 74.5 million USD) to Vietnam next year in spite of global financial crisis.
Head of the UK’s Department for International Development in Vietnam Fiona Louise Lappin said on December 2 that the sum is part of a ten-year development partnership between Vietnam and the UK.
The UK is one of countries soon announce their aid pledge to Vietnam ahead of the Annual Consultative Group Meeting 2008 scheduled for December 4 and 5.
The poor will still be one of top priorities in the UK-funded projects, Lappin said, adding that “It is key at this point in time that Vietnam takes steps to protect the poor”.
Over the past three decades, over 35 million people have escaped from poverty, however, there still have 18 million very poor people and low income families who need to be protected.
While praising Vietnam’s poverty reduction, Lappin warned that Vietnam is not likely to reach its two Millennium Development Goals of sanitary and HIV/AIDS in 2015, especially when foreign aid to the areas will be reduced as Vietnam becomes a medium-income country.
She called on the Vietnamese government to prepare its budget for the areas. The Head of DFID Vietnam also urged the Vietnamese government to increase its anti-corruption efforts, saying “Different ways of being corruption require different strategies to tackle.”
She also expressed her support to Vietnam’s anti-corruption policy and called for supervision mechanism on how effectively the policy works.