The northern province of Nam Dinh is set to recognise 54 communes as new-style rural areas for 2014, boosting it to be one of the five highest achievers during the campaign.

Of the 96 communes joining the initiative, 65 have met the 19 stipulated criteria for new rural areas from 2010-2015.

Over the past four years, Nam Dinh has dedicated over 8.6 trillion VND (409.5 million USD) for new rural development, upgraded around 4,300 kilometres of roads, and grown 257 large-scale model rice fields covering a total of 12,468 hectares.

The province boasts nearly 4,000 farms, 129 traditional craft villages and nearly 2 trillion VND (95.2 million USD) worth of goods. The local economy is gradually shifting towards industry and services.

Hai Hau, Truc Ninh, Nam Truc, Y Yen and Vu Ban districts have attracted investment inflows, generating jobs for tens of thousands of locals.

The national programme on building new-style rural areas, initiated by the Government in 2010, includes 19 criteria on socio-economic development, politics, and defence, aiming to boost rural regions of Vietnam.

The criteria includes developing infrastructure, improving production capacities, environmental protection, and promoting cultural values.-VNA