The disbursed amount of official development assistance (ODA) funds in Vietnam in the first nine months of 2020 stood at only VND26 trillion (US$1.12 billion), equivalent to 32.43% of the year’s estimate, requiring drastic measures to realize the government’s target.
|Overview of the meeting. Source: VGP.|
The information was mentioned at an online conference on October 14 discussing the disbursement progress of ODA funds in the January – September period.
At the meeting, representative of the Ministry of Finance said the projects financed by ODA funds face much more severe impacts from the Covid-19 pandemic than domestic ones.
This came by the fact that contractors were unable to mobilize experts, machinery and equipment from abroad.
Moreover, changes in ODA policies, slow site clearance process, contractors’ limited capacity, disputes between project owners and contractors, are among notable issues preventing a faster ODA funds disbursement.
General Director of the Debt Management and External Finance Department under the Ministry of Finance Truong Hung Long said with current disbursement rate, the target of disbursing the remaining VND40 trillion (US$1.72 billion) in ODA funds for the rest months of the year remains a huge challenge.
However, as public investment is a key measure to boost economic growth during the Covid-19 pandemic, a faster disbursement progress of public funds, including ODA, is a must, stated Mr. Long, adding this proves the Vietnamese government’s responsibility and capability in utilizing funds in the eyes of investors and donors.
In late August, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc warned officials would face disciplinary actions if their ministries and localities fail to realize their respective disbursement targets of public investment funds for this year.
The government targets to disburse the full amount of VND630 trillion (US$27.26 billion) to aid economic recovery, and the progress as of September stood at 57.15% of the target.