Viet Nam  

Quick Facts

Population 96 million (2017)
GDP at PPP (current international dollars) 647 billion (2017)
GDP per capita at PPP (current international dollars) 6,776 (2017)

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Viet Nam has worked with its GMS partners to increase the productivity of its agriculture sector. The country has prioritized critical reforms that have resulted in steady growth in agricultural output, making Viet Nam the second largest exporter of rice in the world. As in other GMS countries, rural transport and market access have also improved agricultural and rural livelihoods.

Viet Nam seeks to develop its energy resources with better transparency, competition and economic efficiency in order to attract private investment, which will complement public sector investments, and ensure energy supply security for its rapidly growing domestic demand. Viet Nam has worked with its GMS neighbors to benefit from power trading arrangements being developed in the subregion, and on information sharing regarding the exploration, production, and transmission of energy resources. Viet Nam is also expanding electricity access to rural and remote areas, and boosting the share of renewable energy to total energy supply.

Similar to other fast-growing GMS economies, Viet Nam has had to respond to growing pressures on its environment and natural resources. The Government has enacted legislation and launched programs to mitigate the environmental impacts of urban expansion. Viet Nam, in coordination with its GMS partners, has invested in tree planting programs that are showing results in terms slowing the loss of forest cover.

With a large rural and young population that is in need of skills development and training, Viet Nam is seeking to train 27.5 million workers – including 10 million rural workers – by 2020. In coordination with its GMS partners, Viet Nam is focusing efforts on poverty reduction and gender mainstreaming in order to help vulnerable workers benefit from national training programs. As part of its national human resources development work, the country is also strengthening its emphasis on protecting migrant workers, both domestically and across borders.

Viet Nam is sharing knowledge with its GMS partners to develop its fixed and mobile telecommunications systems, as well as Internet service. To promote competition and universal access, the country is promoting more transparent telecommunications licensing procedures and fees (in line with its subregional neighbors), and efficient government regulations. Viet Nam takes part in GMS training programs designed to increase the expertise of officials across the subregion.

Making trade and investment easier between GMS countries is a key priority for Viet Nam. The country has worked with its subregional partners to harmonize and simplify trade and investment procedures.

Viet Nam is a vital link in the emerging subregional transport system of the GMS. It is home to key sections of major GMS corridors, such as the Ho Chi Minh City-Phnom Penh Highway, the East-West Transport Corridor, the Kunming-Haiphong Transport Corridor, and the Southern Coastal Corridor. The country has also embarked on the construction of major expressways to enhance its overall transport efficiency. Viet Nam also hosts important maritime links via its ports. Viet Nam’s fast-growing economy has been a strong contributor to the development of GMS economic corridors that have benefited its own people, and the citizens of neighboring countries.

ADB and Vietnam: Fact Sheet

New PRC-Viet Nam Cross-border Rail Freight Service Launched

A new cross-border rail freight service from Suzhou, People’s Republic of China (PRC), to Hanoi, Viet Nam was launched by the East Asia Region section of Nippon Express. Suzhou West Railway Station is located amid industrial clusters of eastern PRC.  

The use of rail transport makes possible reliable lead times of 8-10 days. Ocean freight from PRC to Southeast Asia is usually challenged with constraints in space and reliable transport routes and schedule.  

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Cambodia, Lao PDR, Viet Nam Leaders Vow to Boost Cooperation against COVID-19 and Strengthen Trade

Cambodia Prime Minister Hun Sen, Lao PDR Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith, and Viet Nam Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc held a virtual discussion on 10 March 2021. They lauded their growing relationship and agreed to further strengthen their cooperation in the fight against COVID-19 and in other sectors, including connectivity, energy, and trade and investment.  

Lao PDR expressed appreciation for Cambodia’s medical supply donation to help them combat COVID-19.  

GMS in the News

Lao PDR, Viet Nam to Open New International Border Crossing

The Governments of Lao PDR and Viet Nam will upgrade the Dakta-ok-Nam Giang border crossing between Sekong (Lao PDR) and Quang Nam (Viet Nam) provinces to international status, with the Sekong province opening its first international border crossing on 24 March. This upgrade will further ease the movement of goods and people between the two countries, and shorten the distance between Thailand and Viet Nam via the southern Lao PDR route by more than 100 kilometres.

GMS in the News

Thừa Thiên-Huế province, Vietnam. Photo by David McKelvey (CC BY 2.0).

GMS Project Enhances Biodiversity Conservation in Viet Nam

The Greater Mekong Subregion Biodiversity Conservation Corridors Project, an Asian Development Bank supported project that was first approved in 2010 and given additional funding in June 2015, has significantly contributed to forest protection in Viet Nam’s Quang Nam, Quang Tri, and Thua Thien-Hue provinces.

GMS in the News

The Thai-Lao Friendship bridge built with Australian funding, crossing the Mekong River. Photo by Australia DFAT (CC BY 2.0) .

Construction of the Fifth Thai-Lao Friendship Bridge Begins

The fifth Thai-Lao Friendship Bridge across the Mekong River is being constructed, following the signing of the construction agreement in December 2020. It will connect Bolikhamxay province in the Lao People’s Democratic Republic (PDR) and Bueng Kan in Thailand. The project is set to transform Bolikhamxay into a regional trade hub and transit route for Lao PDR, Thailand, and Viet Nam. It could potentially increase the subregion's tourism and attract more trade and investment for Lao PDR. 

GMS in the News

The Joint Declaration adopted at the 11th CLV Summit provides a foundation for the socio-economic development plan until 2030. Photo by VNA.

11th CLV Summit Commits to Strengthen Development Triangle Area

Cambodia, Lao PDR, and Viet Nam (CLV) Leaders expressed their firm commitment to strengthen the CLV Development Triangle Area (DTA) in order to accelerate economic growth, alleviate poverty, and promote socio-cultural progress in the subregion. At the 11th CLV Summit held online on 9 December, they adopted a Joint Declaration that provides a foundation for the subregion’s socio-economic development plan until 2030 and the Tourism Development Plan. They also adopted the Development Plan for Sustainable Rubber Industry.  

GMS in the News

Viet Nam Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc holds talks with his Lao PDR Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith. Photo by VGP via Nhandan.

Lao PDR Prime Minister, Viet Nam Prime Minister Discuss Reopening Border Gates

Lao People's Democratic Republic (PDR) Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith and Viet Nam Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc held a phone conversation to discuss bilateral ties and regional cooperation. Noting that Lao PDR and Viet Nam have managed the COVID-19 pandemic well, they highlighted the need to further facilitate cargo and passenger movement between their countries, and to soon reach consensus on plans to reopen mainland border gates and resume commercial flights.  

GMS in the News