ADB Helps Viet Nam Improve Tourism Infrastructure for Inclusive Growth
HA NOI, VIET NAM (25 November 2014) – The Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of Viet Nam today signed a $50 million loan agreement to upgrade Viet Nam’s tourism infrastructure, boost tourist spending, and create more jobs in the industry for poor and ethnic minority communities.
At the signing ceremony, State Bank of Viet Nam’s Governor Nguyen Van Binh represented the Government, and Country Director for Viet Nam, Tomoyuki Kimura, represented ADB.
“Tourism development projects are an effective way of creating jobs, developing work skills, and reducing poverty,” said Mr. Kimura. “A core goal of this project is to promote inclusive economic growth by creating income-generating opportunities to benefit poor and ethnic minorities, women in particular.”
Tourism plays an increasingly important role in Viet Nam’s economy. In 2013, Viet Nam received over 7.5 million international tourists, a 10.6% increase from 2012. The sector directly contributed 4.5% to gross domestic product and sustained 2.3 million jobs last year, more than 9% of the country’s total employment.
The project aims to boost tourism competitiveness in Dien Bien, Ha Tinh, Kien Giang, Lao Cai, and Tay Ninh, five provinces situated within the Greater Mekong Subregion economic corridors. Upgrades to 45 kilometers of rural roads will open access to tourist attractions in under-developed areas with large ethnic minority populations. More than 30,000 people will benefit from better access to markets and social services, while environmental conditions at tourist sites will be improved.
Projects in the five provinces are expected to lift annual tourism revenue to $480 million by 2019, from $190 million in 2012, helping to create 85,000 additional tourism-related jobs, about 60% of which will go to women. The project will also support regional cooperation and integration by helping Viet Nam implement regional tourism standards and promote multi-country tour circuits.
ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration. Established in 1966, it is owned by 67 members—48 from the region. In 2013, ADB assistance totaled $21.0 billion, including cofinancing of $6.6 billion.