|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.
The Twelfth Meeting of the Subregional Transport Forum (STF-12) was held in Da Nang City, Viet Nam on 12-14 August 2008. The Meeting was jointly organized by the Ministry of Transport of Viet Nam and the Asian Development Bank (ADB). The objective of the Meeting was to discuss recent developments, key issues, and future plans in the GMS transport sector, with particular focus on maximizing the development impact of the network and on the problems that remain as regards the conduct of transport and trade operations along the GMS economic corridors and possible ways of addressing them.
In this issue of the Journal of Greater Mekong Subregion Development Studies, we feature five articles that concern some of the more pressing issues of cooperation in the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) - trade facilitation and trade logistics, the trade impact of cross-border transport infrastructure, tourism corridor development, and biofuels and rural renewable energy. The diversity of the topics tackled in this volume reflects the multifaceted challenges of regional cooperation.
At the core of the Mekong region are the 320 million people who share a common culture and are nourished by the same great river. More connected than ever before, lives are changing as the meaning of community expands beyond borders. The photographs in My Mekong take us into the heart of that community, as seen through the eyes of its young people.