Viet Nam: Capacity Building and Coordination Improvement for Effective Regional Cooperation Investment Planning

Sovereign Project | 46008-001

Summary

The technical assistance (TA) will help the Government of Viet Nam promote the effectiveness of regional cooperation and integration (RCI) investment planning in Viet Nam through strengthening the coordination among key agencies involved in RCI initiatives, and improving capacity of relevant government officials in planning public investments especially for RCI projects and activities.

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Project Name Capacity Building and Coordination Improvement for Effective Regional Cooperation Investment Planning
Project Number 46008-001
Country Viet Nam
Project Status Approved
Project Type / Modality of Assistance Technical Assistance
Source of Funding / Amount
TA 8310-VIE: Capacity Building and Coordination Improvement for Effective Regional Cooperation Investment Planning
Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction US$ 800,000.00
Strategic Agendas Inclusive economic growth
Drivers of Change Governance and capacity development
Partnerships
Sector / Subsector Public sector management - Economic affairs management
Gender Equity and Mainstreaming
Description The technical assistance (TA) will help the Government of Viet Nam promote the effectiveness of regional cooperation and integration (RCI) investment planning in Viet Nam through strengthening the coordination among key agencies involved in RCI initiatives, and improving capacity of relevant government officials in planning public investments especially for RCI projects and activities.
Project Rationale and Linkage to Country/Regional Strategy

In Viet Nam, the coordination of RCI initiatives is particularly complex because of the large number of RCI initiatives it is involved in and different dimensions of coordination required for each of them. There is no single agency supervising all RCI initiatives, and the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) and Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) are mandated to serve as the national focal points for different RCI initiatives. Between MPI and MOFA, RCI coordination is fragmented. There is no formal and functioning mechanism that looks at the totality of Viet Nam's participation across these initiatives, sets a strategic direction to effectively position Viet Nam in different regional groupings, and determines national priorities across the initiatives to avoid overlaps. Also, no standard operational procedures are in place for RCI coordination. MPI is the lead agency to coordinate the planning of public investments including those for RCI activities. However, absence of an effective coordination mechanism, and lack of staff capacity and knowledge required for planning RCI activities at the national and sub-national levels weaken investment efficiency.

A solid coordination mechanism between the central and provincial authorities also does not exist. Central ministries provide budget and directives to their respective provincial units who will then report on the progress of their tasks to the central ministries. The provincial people's committees, and units associated with other central ministries, may not always be involved in this decision-making and reporting process although informed on key activities. This mechanism does not encourage active interaction between local authorities and provincial units of central ministries, running the risk of isolating policy decisions from the reality on the ground. Inadequate RCI coordination within the government also affects the efficiency of Viet Nam's national coordinator/focal point for each of the RCI initiatives and their working relationships with their Secretariats such as ASEAN Secretariat based in Jakarta, Indonesia, and GMS Secretariat in ADB Headquarters in Manila, the Philippines.

Staff involved in planning RCI activities generally lack skills and knowledge critical for their responsibilities, i.e., skills for general public investment planning and specific knowledge of planning RCI activities. Limited capacity is particularly evident at the provincial level. Apart from the mismatch of skills and work requirements, provincial staff's awareness of global, regional and national development issues as well as the benefit of RCI is generally low. Poor coordination and information dissemination from the central to provincial agencies largely contribute to the weaknesses of human resource capacity at the provincial level. This has been depriving provincial staff from participating effectively in planning RCI activities.

The absence of an effective coordination mechanism and the lack of staff skills and knowledge for planning RCI activities limit the possibility of seeking complementarity and synergy between and among RCI programs and projects, affecting the achievement of their intended results and substantial development impact. If Viet Nam is to successfully be integrated into the ASEAN Economic Community to be realized by 2015, and implement the GMS new Strategic Framework (SF) 2012-2022 , it is essential for Viet Nam to improve the efficiency of RCI coordination and investment planning, particularly given the country's significant demand for infrastructure improvement and social services.

Impact The TA aims to improve the efficiency of public investments for regional cooperation and integration initiatives.
Project Outcome
Description of Outcome Strengthened capacity and coordination for effective investment planning and programming of regional cooperation and integration activities in Viet Nam
Progress Toward Outcome List of project proposals for GMS Regional Investment Framework submitted to GMS Secretariat.
Implementation Progress
Description of Project Outputs

A national coordination network for the GMS Program is established.

National GMS Investment Framework and Plan are developed.

Capacity building program is implemented.

Status of Implementation Progress (Outputs, Activities, and Issues)

Output 1: First network meeting took place on 29 November 2013. GMS focals from key agencies were assigned and participated in the meeting. Second network meeting was held on 19 November 2014 to update members on recent TA accomplishments, GMS events, and ADB's support to other regional cooperation and integration initiatives involving Viet Nam.

Output 2: the TA has actively assisted in GMS RIF preparation and started supporting Cambodia-Laos-Viet Nam Development Triangle Area (CLV DTA) to improve its master plan and broaden development partners' engagement to mobilize more investment funding. A CLV DTA development partner forum was organized in April 2014.

Output 3: Capacity Building Specialist is on board starting January 2014. Comprehensive training needs assessment and proposed training programs have been prepared, discussed with EA, and presented at the second network meeting (under Output 1) in November 2014.

Geographical Location
Summary of Environmental and Social Aspects
Environmental Aspects
Involuntary Resettlement
Indigenous Peoples
Stakeholder Communication, Participation, and Consultation
During Project Design

Based on findings and recommendations of TA 4788-VIE: Capacity Strengthening of Viet Nam's Regional Cooperation Coordination and Public Investment Programming, the ADB project team had several meetings with MPI who was also the EA of TA 4788-VIE to discuss how best to implement the TA's recommendations to effectively and sustainably address pending issues in coordinating and planning regional cooperation activities. Lessons learnt from the completed TA 4788-VIE had been seriously discussed and agreed to be taken into account in the design of the new TA. The ADB project team also took into account concerns of MOFA, the government focal point for several major regional cooperation initiatives shared in their proposal for ADB's support in strengthening their capacity for regional cooperation coordination.

Other key central government agencies and provinces along the GMS economic corridors involved in RCI projects/initiatives were also consulted to formulate the project concept paper.

During Project Implementation Stakeholders within the government both at the central and provincial levels are regularly consulted on and involved in TA implementation. Key development partners are also invited to some TA activities as speakers or resource persons. As the TA is supported by JFPR, the Embassy of Japan and JICA have been closely informed on TA implementation progress.
Business Opportunities
Consulting Services

The TA will require 8 person-months of international consulting services in the area of regional cooperation institutional development, and 84 person-months of national in regional cooperation, economic planning, information and communication technology, and project coordination. Specifically, a group of six consultants will be recruited: (i) a regional cooperation institutional development specialist - team leader (international) for 8 person-months; (ii) a regional cooperation specialist - project coordinator (national) for 20 person-months; (iii) an economic planning specialist (national) for 10 person-months; (iv) an information technology specialist (national) for 6 person-months; and (v) two project analysts (national) for 24 person-months each.

The consultants will be recruited individually by ADB in accordance with its Guidelines on the Use of Consultants (2010, as amended from time to time).

Procurement Small provision for office equipment estimating at US$2,600.
Responsible ADB Officer Yumiko Tamura
Responsible ADB Department Southeast Asia Department
Responsible ADB Division Viet Nam Resident Mission
Executing Agencies
Ministry of Planning and Investment6 B Hoang Dieu street, Ba Dinh district,
Hanoi, Viet Nam
Timetable
Concept Clearance 03 Apr 2012
Fact Finding 05 Apr 2012 to 19 Apr 2012
MRM -
Approval 21 Dec 2012
Last Review Mission -
Last PDS Update 19 Nov 2014

TA 8310-VIE

Milestones
Approval Signing Date Effectivity Date Closing
Original Revised Actual
21 Dec 2012 29 May 2013 29 May 2013 31 Dec 2015 - -
Financing Plan/TA Utilization Cumulative Disbursements
ADB Cofinancing Counterpart Total Date Amount
Gov Beneficiaries Project Sponsor Others
0.00 800,000.00 100,000.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 900,000.00 21 Dec 2012 298,781.19

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