A class of the Toa Tinh primary school for ethnic minority students in Tuan Giao district, Dien Bien province (Photo: VNA)

Dien Bien (VNA) – Sixty-five years since the historic victory of the Dien Bien Phu Campaign, the northwestern province of Dien Bien has been making progress in development efforts.

The Dien Bien Phu Campaign began in March 1954 under the command of General Vo Nguyen Giap and ended with Vietnam’s victory on May 7, 1954, leading to the signing of the 1954 Geneva Accords, in which France agreed to withdraw its forces from its colonies in Indochina.

Vice Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee Le Van Quy told Vietnam News Agency that the victory marked the end of the Vietnamese people’s resistance war against French colonialists, as well as the collapse of the colonial rule in Indochina and the world.

He said to Dien Bien and the northwestern region, the triumph put an end to France’s occupation, oppression and exploitation, bringing a free life to local ethnic groups. 

The official emphasised that the Dien Bien Phu battlefield is a unique relic site found nowhere else on earth, which holds special and important values to not only Vietnam but also peace-lovers around the globe.

Therefore, Dien Bien considers the preservation and upholding of this relic site’s values critical to educating younger generations on patriotism and revolutionary traditions, as well as to local socio-economic development.

In 2003, provincial authorities and relevant agencies built and submitted a master plan on the preservation and promotion of the Dien Bien Phu Victory’s relic site to the Prime Minister for approval.

The preservation work has gained encouraging outcomes so far when many main relics have been restored, including the command post of the Dien Bien Phu Campaign in Muong Phang, the route on which Vietnamese soldiers pulled artilleries, and the centre of France’s fortress complex, Vice Chairman Quy said, adding that other relics are also being rehabilitated so that the whole relic site deserves the special national status.

Thanks to the solidarity and efforts of all-level authorities and people, Dien Bien – a mountainous province whose economy used to be underdeveloped – has attained relatively good achievements in socio-economic development over the last decade, the official said.

He noted its gross regional domestic product (GRDP) grew by 7.15 percent last year and about 8.3 percent annually between 2016 and 2018. Per capita GRDP has surpassed 27 million VND (over 1,170 USD) each year.

The household poverty rate was reduced by some 3.69 percent annually from 48.14 percent in 2015 to 37.08 percent in 2018.

Meanwhile, the economic structure has changed in a positive manner when the service sector has expanded to account for 54.61 percent of the local economy, industry – construction 22.82 percent, and agro-forestry-fishery sector nearly 20 percent.

By the end of 2018, all the 130 communes, wards and townships had had concreted roads reaching their central areas, making them accessible by cars. All the communal-level localities have also accessed electricity from the national grid, ensuring power supply for 90 percent of households in Dien Bien.

Additionally, the province has kept a stable political situation, enhanced defence – security, and ensured social order and safety. It has also reinforced the political system and improved the apparatus’s efficiency. Its external relations have also been expanded, according to Vice Chairman Quy.-VNA