The Asian Development Bank (ADB) will provide loans worth 160 million USD and a grant of 11 million USD to expand Vietnam’s access to quality health services and improve irrigation infrastructure.

Agreements to this effect were signed between ADB and the State Bank of Vietnam in Hanoi on September 7.

Of the total, a 60 million USD loan from ADB and the 11 million USD non-refundable aid from the Government of Australia will finance the Health Human Resources Sector Development Programme which deals with obstacles in health service delivery, especially the management of human and financial resources.

The programme will upgrade training facilities, provide training for ethnic minority health workers and facilitate the adoption of standard treatment and costing packages for health services provided to the Vietnamese people.

Addressing the ceremony, ADB representative Ayumi Konishi said that Vietnam should accelerate and step up socially inclusive policy reforms to address inequalities and improve delivery of social services as improvements in health status - especially of the poor and ethnic minorities - are critical to achieving the country’s development goals of inclusive development.

Another 100 million USD loan was for the Strengthening Water Management and Irrigation Systems Rehabilitation Project.

The project will repair the 50-year-old Bac Hung Hai irrigation and drainage system in the northern provinces of Hung Yen, Hai Duong and Hai Phong.

It will also construct a new training centre for the Water Resources University which is expected to be completed in June, 2016 and benefits 14,200 people./.