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Hanoi advised to consider citizens customers to enhance public service quality
Hai Yen 17:19, 2019/07/23
Hanoi’s efforts in reforming administrative procedures must focus on making breakthroughs at communal level, according to an expert.
An expert has advised Hanoi’s authority to treat citizens as customers in a bid to enhance its public administration performance quality. 
 
Overview of the conference.
Overview of the conference.
Since 2011, Hanoi's Provincial Governance and Public Administration Performance Index (PAPI) has been on the decline, ranking 56th in 2018 from the 20th in 2011, despite an increase in the evaluation score of 36.4 in 2011 to 42.33 in 2018, said Le Van Hoat, former vice chairman of the Hanoi People’s Committee. 

There has been a minor improvement in the 2016 – 2018 period, with an increase of 8.52 points and two ranks in 2018 against two years earlier, Hoat said at a conference on July 23 discussing solutions to improve Hanoi’s PAPI scores. 
 
Vice Chairman of Hanoi People's Committee Nguyen Doan Toan.
Vice Chairman of the Hanoi People's Committee Nguyen Doan Toan.
For the PAPI 2018 report, over 14,300 citizens who were randomly selected from all 63 provinces were interviewed. The index assesses citizen experiences with national and local government performance in governance, public administration and public service delivery.

PAPI provides a tool for listening to citizens, to their expectations of the government, and in that way enables them to participate in the governance process. Over the years PAPI has become a model instrument for participatory governance that other countries have sought to emulate as a key indicator for SDG 16 on peaceful, just, inclusive societies, said Caitlin Wiesen, UNDP resident representative in Vietnam at the launch of the report. 

Putting the result in the mix of others indexes, such as the Provincial Competitiveness Index (PCI) and the Public Administration Reform (PAR) Index, while the two former saw a strong increase, Hanoi's PAPI has been stagnant and only improved slightly over the last three years. 

This showed more efforts needed to gained citizens’ approval in Hanoi’s public administration performance and efficiency in state governance, Hoat said. 

Hoat requested to raise awareness among public servants regarding PAPI and putting responsibility and working ethic among top evaluation criteria for their performance. 

Breakthrough in communal level essential PAPI improvements

Do Thi Thanh Huyen, UNDP Vietnam expert, said Hanoi scored high in three components, including “Public Administrative Procedures” with 7.5 points out of the maximum 10, “Public Service Delivery” with 6.92, and “Control of Corruption in the Public Sector” with 6.07. 

However, “Vertical Accountability” and “Environmental Governance” stayed low at 4.61 and 3.58 points, respectively. 

Head of the Institute for Hanoi Socio-economic Development Studies Nguyen Chi My revealed 70% of public administration services are delivered at communal level, and the remaining 30% at district level, making Hanoi’s final result heavily depend on local authority’s performance at low level. 

“Hanoi’s efforts to reform administrative procedures must focus on making breakthroughs at communal level,” My stressed. 

Speaking at the event, Vice Chairman of the Hanoi People’s Committee Nguyen Doan Toan said the PAPI is an important evaluation method for Hanoi, especially as the city is working towards the establishment of e-government and smart city, focusing on greater transparency in state governance. 

Deputy Director of the municipal of Home Affairs Nguyen Dinh Hoa added the PAPI creates motivation for public servants to improve their performance and better serve citizens, contributing to the overall development of the country. 
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