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Launch of Oxfam’s new project- “Pro-Poor Policy Monitoring and Analysis in Vietnam”

(07:46:08 AM 29/03/2014)
(Tinmoitruong.vn) - On 28th March 2014, Oxfam in Vietnam will launch its new project “Pro-poor Policy Monitoring and Analysis in Vietnam”. Between 2014 and 2016, the project will operate in 10 provinces and cities throughout Vietnam. It will conduct longitudinal pro-poor policy monitoring and in-depth thematic policy analysis based on four main themes (ethnic minority poverty, inequality, urban poverty and local governance reform) and three types of policy (Planning and Fiscal Decentralization, Agricultural Development and Vocational Training).

 

 

Oxfam in Vietnam recently conducted research into existing pro poor policies. They found that, as of March 2014, there are 501 pro poor policies currently being implemented in Vietnam. 188 of these policies provide support to the poor directly (through monetary support, education programs etc.) and 313 provide support to the poor indirectly.

 

Almost all of these policies focus on supporting the specific needs of poor individuals, poor households and poor areas. There have not been any specific policies on how budgets should be allocated or spent, on monitoring and evaluating resource management, or on which methods should be used to implement pro-poor interventions.

 

Although pro-poor policies and programs have been increased in scope and size, many policies are still inefficient for the following reasons:

 

·         Overlapping, scattered and distorted policies lead to resource dissipation

 

·         Not enough policies complement each other

 

·         Limited decentralization of power to local authorities

 

·         Inadequate resources for policy implementation

 

·         Inconsistently issued policies, lack of coordination in enforcement mechanisms

 

·         One size fits all approach means policies don’t fit local conditions or the specific needs of target groups

 

Vietnam has recently become a low-middle income country and the roles of international donors have changed (e.g. the Consultative Group meeting has been transformed from an aid sourcing event to a policy dialogue forum – Vietnam Development Partnership Forum). These changes have created new problems leaving government agencies in need of evidence-based policy advice to support increasingly complex policy reforms. Previous pro-poor policies focused on reducing poverty through general economic growth. In the face of a changing society, increasing inequality and the concentration of poverty into mountainous and Ethnic Minority communities, this approach is no longer appropriate.

 

The urgency in designing new and amending current pro-poor policies so they are fit for the future was mentioned by Deputy Prime Minister Vo Van Ninh at the end of February, during a Central Steering Committee meeting on sustainable pro-poor policy. The design of new, efficient pro-poor policies should include the diagnosis of multi-dimensional poverty, as well as voices/feedback from poor men, poor women and local groups.

 

Ms. Le Kim Dung, Associate Country Director of Oxfam in Vietnam, said: “Oxfam’s Pro-poor Policy Monitoring and Analysis project is funded by Irish Aid and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) . The project will provide findings and recommendations based on the collected evidence to inform the policy makers at provincial and national levels, representatives of elected bodies, donors, civil society organizations and the public about the renovation in developing and implementing pro-poor policies in Vietnam.

 

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