On January 17, the State Bank of Vietnam and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) signed four loan agreements totalling 176 million USD to support four projects in Vietnam.

The loans will help the Vietnamese Government increase public private partnerships (PPP) and infrastructure investment, enhance the competitiveness of towns along the Greater Mekong Sub-region (GMS) economic corridors, improve sanitary and phytosanitary conditions, and food safety handling in cross border trade and tourism, as well as develop the national capacity to mitigate HIV risks and vulnerability in border areas with other GMS countries.

To increase private sector investment in infrastructure, ADB will provide a 20-million USD loan from its Asian Development Fund (ADF) to fund the Public Private Partnership Support Project. The money will be used to establish a Project Development Facility (PDF) to bring bankable PPP projects to the market.

To enhance the competitiveness of towns along the East-West and Southern Economic Corridors and transform the GMS transport corridors into vibrant economic corridors, a 130 million USD loan will convert the corridor towns of Dong Ha, Lao Bao and Moc Bai into economic hubs by improving urban-environmental infrastructure and the institutional capacities of provincial and local authorities.

To help Vietnam improve food safety, ADB will provide an 11 million USD ADF loan to finance the Trade Facilitation: Improved Sanitary and Phytosanitary Handling in GMS Trade Project. The project will support the country establish food safety surveillance and inspection programmes, including food handling in the tourism industry, and regional cooperation in sanitary and phytosantary management in GMS food trade.

To reach high-risk and vulnerable populations in the border areas along shared economic corridors, ADB and the Vietnamese Government are implementing the GMS Capacity Building for HIV/AIDS Prevention Project. Financed by a 15 million USD ADF loan, the project will help the Government develop its national and regional capacity to mitigate HIV risks and vulnerability, primarily in Vietnam’s 15 border provinces.-VNA