Nine-month ODA disbursement hits $1.7 billion

Vietnam disbursed US$1.7 billion of official development assistance (ODA) capital in the first nine months of 2009, meeting 90 percent of the year’s target, according to the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI).

With this progress, ODA disbursement for the whole year is expected to reach US$3 billion, said the MPI.

According to Dr. Nguyen Minh Phong of Hanoi ’s Socio-Economic Policy Research Institute, in the context that Vietnam is focusing on stimulating investment, increased ODA disbursement will help to create resources, enabling more economic growth.

It will also satisfy concerns over the balance of international payments for 2009, said Mr. Phong.

From the beginning of the year, ODA capital through previously signed agreements with donors has reached over $3.3 billion, including large-scale projects such as a $160 million project to upgrade urban areas with a loan from the World Bank and a $150 million credit from the Asian Development Bank to develop renewable energies and upgrade the country’s national grid in remote and mountainous areas.

By the end of the year, a $665 million loan from the Japanese government to build Thai Binh power station and $100 million in funding from the Republic of Korea to build Vinh Thinh bridge are expected to be signed, raising ODA in 2009 to $5.5 billion.

Since the first consultative group meeting of donors to Vietnam in 1993, ODA committed by international donors to the Southeast Asian country amounted to $42.4 billion by the end of 2008.

During the 1993-2008 period, ODA capital signed through agreements with donors was $35.2 billion, accounting for 83 percent of the committed capital, of which $22 billion was disbursed.

Two sectors - transport and communications, and post and telecommunications, have attracted the largest share of ODA. They are followed by the energy sector and industry, agriculture and rural development, health care and education, science and technology, and the environment.

Vietnam has 28 bilateral and 23 multilateral donors registered and approved for permanent ODA programs.

Source: VNA

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