Ho Chi Minh City, December 9, 2017 — During her first visit to Vietnam, World Bank Vice President for Sustainable Development, Laura Tuck reaffirmed the World Bank Group’s continued support for Vietnam as the country addresses the challenges of rapid urbanization and the impacts of climate change.
“Vietnam’s transformation from one of the poorest country to a middle-income country in just three decades is an inspiration to many countries around the world. The World Bank looks forward to continue its close partnership with Vietnam to ensure this growth is inclusive, sustainable and climate-resilient,” said Laura Tuck, Vice President for Sustainable Development.
In Ho Chi Minh City, Ms. Tuck witnessed the development impacts brought about by World Bank-funded projects, such as the Nhieu Loc Thi Nghe canal revitalization project, a transformational project with the City.
Ms. Tuck encouraged City authorities to leverage the greater autonomy under the special mechanism recently granted by the central government to the City , focusing primarily on land, investment, and financial management for its development. She also affirmed that a long term, comprehensive, city-wide and multi-sectoral engagement with the City is a key pillar of the Bank’s urbanization strategy in Vietnam.
Ms. Tuck then traversed the Mekong Delta through Ben Tre province to see first-hand the impacts of climate change on the lives, livelihoods and assets of communities. The Delta is home to more than 17 million people, and accounts for about half of Vietnam’s food production, and the region is facing a number of climate-related challenges including coastal erosion and salinity intrusion. She noted that Government agencies and communities can help decide the future of the Delta ---by making informed choices about how to protect the delta, when to make room for the river, where to let the salt water remain, and when community livelihoods might need to be adjusted in response to changing natural conditions.
Vietnam is moving strongly forward on a more holistic and spatially integrated vision to manage the current and future risks and opportunities in the Delta. The World Bank is helping to identify and prioritize climate resilient investments, and financing the preparation of an integrated regional master plan that will bring together sectors and provinces.
During her meeting with leaders from Can Tho City, Ms. Tuck discussed the role of cities in the transformation of the Mekong Delta, a region with high population density, and the importance of strengthening urban resilience.
Laura Tuck assumed the position of the World Bank’s Vice President for Sustainable Development on July 1, 2015. In this role, she oversees the work of the Global Practices that bring together the best expertise from across the World Bank Group, and from partners, to help countries tackle their most complex challenges in the area of sustainable development. The practices under her responsibility include Agriculture and Food; Climate Change; Energy and Extractives; Environment and Natural Resources; Social, Urban, Rural and Resilience; Transport and ICT; and Water. Before taking this position, Ms. Tuck served as Vice President for the Europe and Central Asia (ECA) region.