NGOs pledge to provide USD 4.5 million aid value to Thanh Hoa
(VNF) - The Thanh Hoa provincial administration and the Vietnam Union of Friendship Organisations (VUFO) held a conference in Hanoi on June 27th in an effort to call for foreign non-governmental organisations (NGOs)’ financial assistance in poor areas in the central province.
Speaking at the event, Vice Chairwoman of the provincial People’s Committee Le Thi Thin said Thanh Hoa lies in a gateway between the north and central of Vietnam with railway, road, waterway and aviation infrastructure.
As a poor province with limited internal resources, Thanh Hoa always heeds external economic activities to attract foreign resources, focusing on calling for official development assistance and foreign NGOs’ aid, she said, adding that the province now records 84 valid foreign-invested projects with a total investment of over USD 13.98 million.
The VUFO has also listed Thanh Hoa among the top localities nationwide that has effectively used foreign NGOs’ aid.
Vice Chairwoman of the provincial People’s Committee Le Thi Thin. (Photos: Thuy Linh/VNF)
Over the past decade, the total financial assistance provided by foreign NGOs has hit USD 78.96 million (VND 1.737 billion) via more than 300 projects. Up to USD 7.9 million (VND 180 billion) on average was disbursed each year. In the first half of this year, 3.5 million USD has been disbursed.
The projects are mostly in agriculture, rural development, poverty reduction, capacity improvement, health care, education, environment protection, natural disaster mitigation and climate change response.
Many projects funded by NGOs have been productive and spread to many localities such as a children-oriented education model by the World Vision in seven mountainous and disadvantaged districts, the trans-generation mutual support club by Help Age.
Thinh urged foreign NGOs in Vietnam to assist Thanh Hoa’s sustainable socio-economic development and pledged all possible support to their projects.
She affirmed that local authorities and sectors will simplify administrative procedures, ensure security and order, and provide favourable conditions for foreign NGOs.
Phan Anh Son, head of the VUFO’s People’s Aid Coordinating Committee said in the past five years, VUFO together with ministries, agencies, localities and partners effectively carried out the national programme on foreign aid mobilisation for the 2013-2017 period. The framework programme for 2017-2022 have been devised.
Participants then discussed potentials and strengths of Thanh Hoa, local demand for foreign capital and aid.
At the conference, An Yong Sic, Chief Representative of Good Neighbors Vietnam (GNI) said, “During the five years of the first phase, Good Neighbors highly appreciated the coordination of all levels. Relevant agencies of Thanh Hoa province, especially Vinh Loc district.”
According to him, Local authorities have always provided favorable conditions for NGOs to fulfill their role, such as speeding up administrative procedures to approve the project, helping to speed up the project without delay, assisting NGOs’ teams scheduled visit or survey. In addition, as a focal point, Thanh Hoa province has assisted GNI in collecting information, consulting and support as needed.
However, in the process of working, GNI still inevitably need more time to contact and raise awareness of the people. To improve this issue, GNI expects the local authorities to work more closely in communicating and mobilising people to participate.
"Besides, we are still having difficulty finding out the difficult areas of Thanh Hoa province. I hope that the provincial development project will receive more attention and support for a sustainable Thanh Hoa," he added.
Thanh Hoa’s representative and a representative of NGO sign an agreement.
On the occasion, the provincial authorities signed memoranda of understanding with 8 foreign partners (including Care, IDH, Project Bom, SRD, CERDA, KFHI, Gret, and Helvetats) and presented decisions approving projects of GNV.
Total budget to deploy projects committed by the NGOs in Thanh Hoa in the next period is expected worth over USD 4.5 million./.
Translated by Tu Phan