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Vietnam: Project preparation facility expected to fast forward development benefits to the poor

July 15, 2010

Hanoi, July 15, 2010 – The World Bank and the State Bank of Vietnam today signed a credit of USD$ 100 million to raise the capacity of Vietnamese Government agencies to plan and prepare public investments under the Project Preparation Technical Assistance Facility Project.

Public investments in Vietnam generally, and infrastructure investments in particular, often face difficulties in keeping to schedule and are frequently delayed. The stock of total undisbursed ODA (Official Development Assistance) was about $11 billion at the end of 2008, and this could well increase unless project start-up delays are substantially reduced. This delay in investment implementation also deprives the Vietnamese economy of substantial economic and social benefits.

As development projects will continue to be in high demand in all economic and social sectors, this facility is designed to improve quality at entry, to shorten preparation periods and to increase capacity within government agencies and the national consulting industry to produce project preparation documents of good quality within an acceptable time frame.

“By improving the speed and quality of preparation work, the project is expected to accelerate project start-up and disbursements, thus enabling beneficiaries to quickly realize the economic and social benefits from investments supported through the project,” says Victoria Kwakwa, the World Bank Country Director for Vietnam.

The project is expected to be implemented from October 2010 to October 2015. Funding for the project comes from the International Development Association (IDA), The World Bank’s source of funding for low income countries.

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