The Government will provide preferential loans to about 1.5 million households in Vietnam who are living near the poverty line.

Under Decision 15/2013/QD-TTg signed recently by Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung, loans for these households will enjoy an interest rate of 0.85 percent per month and more than 10 percent a year.

Under the standards set for 2011-15, near-poor households are those with a monthly income of 401,000 - 520,000 VND (19 - 25 USD) in rural areas and 501,000- 650,000 VND (24 - 31USD) in urban areas.
Those who have the lower income are designated as poor households.

The Vietnam Bank for Social Policies (VBSP) is channeling the loans. It was asked to make plans to ensure annual capital for the preferential loans.

The VBSP started to provide preferential loans to poor households in 2009.

The new policy will take effect from April 16, 2013.-VNA