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Vietnam, a nation of 92 million people, aspires to be more fully integrated into the global economy and community and an industrialized nation by 2020. The country’s efforts to open its economy to global trade and investment, with USAID support, have contributed to high and sustainable rates of growth over the past two decades, boosting Vietnam into the ranks of lower middle-income countries and reducing the country’s poverty level from nearly 60 percent in the 1990s to 17 percent in 2012.
Despite its rapid transformation, Vietnam confronts a variety of challenges that undermine inclusive growth, including: a lack of legal, regulatory and capital market systems that meet global standards; low competitiveness; high income disparity; inadequate higher and vocational education; emerging pandemic threats; limited access to quality health and social services; and environmental degradation and climate change threats. USAID is working to help Vietnam overcome these key development challenges. USAID works with Vietnam to strengthen capacities to enhance governance; expand access to quality higher education; address the harmful effects of HIV/AIDS and threats to global health security; improve welfare of persons with disabilities; advance gender equality, female empowerment and the role of vulnerable populations; and address environmental challenges, including climate change, biodiversity conservation and dioxin contamination.
USAID’s support to improve economic growth and trade has helped Vietnam rewrite about 150 laws and regulations affecting commercial activities and related judicial procedures.
- Over 30,000 social work and engineering university students have been reached with modernized teaching methods supported by USAID, creating a more job-ready workforce.
- USAID-sponsored equipment and training has helped reduce time needed for lab results by 66 percent, helping to detect, track and respond to global health security threats.
GOVERNANCE FOR BROADER-BASED SUSTAINABLE GROWTH
USAID supports efforts to strengthen the rule of law, improve economic governance and further Vietnam’s integration into the global economy as the country continues its transition to a market-driven system. Over the past 10 years, 80 percent of provinces have improved their economic governance in part due to USAID support. Working with the Government of Vietnam, USAID promotes transparency in law making, accountability, access to information and increased competiveness, which contributes to increased public participation while preparing Vietnam to comply with and take advantage of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement. To help increase the number of job-ready graduates, USAID promotes a vocational training alliance with academic and industry partners and a program to improve social work.
Under the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), USAID activities to prevent HIV and treat and care for people living with the disease reach over 90,000 people in Vietnam. USAID assistance has helped Vietnam establish a national network to identify and treat people with multidrug-resistant tuberculosis. USAID’s Global Health Security-related assistance combating highly pathogenic avian influenza and other pandemic threats helped reduce the number of bird flu outbreaks in Vietnam from almost 2,000 in 2005 to fewer than 200 in 2014.
Since 2010, USAID has improved the welfare of about 23,000 persons with disabilities, regardless of cause, through provision of higher quality services, advocacy support and promotion of public policies that protect their rights and provide systematic services, building on a legacy of programs initiated under the Leahy War Victims Fund in 1989. Our programs assist underrepresented populations such as lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities, women, and families affected by natural disasters. USAID programs have reached more than one million people in nearly 150 communities with disaster preparedness services, including establishing and raising awareness of evacuation routes in over 1,000 businesses.
ENVIRONMENT AND GLOBAL CLIMATE CHANGE
Vietnam is one of the most vulnerable countries in the world to climate change. USAID supports government and social institutions in developing and implementing strategies in low emission development, climate change mitigation and adaptation, and biodiversity conservation. At the Government of Vietnam’s request, USAID is conducting a large-scale project to clean up dioxin-contaminated soil and sediment at Danang Airport and an environmental assessment at Bien Hoa Airbase, where high dioxin concentrations remain decades after war.
Last updated: December 10, 2015