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Viet Nam & UN
Statement by H.E. Ambassador Bui The Giang Deputy Permanent Representative of Viet Nam at the 48th Session of the Commission for Social Development Priority Theme: Social Integration
02-03-2010, 12:45 am

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Statement by

H.E. Ambassador Bui The Giang

Deputy Permanent Representative of Viet Nam

at the 48th Session of the Commission for Social Development

Priority Theme: Social Integration

(3 February 2010)


Mr. Chairman,

I join previous speakers in heartily congratulating you and other members of the Bureau on your elections and assure you of my Delegation’s full support and cooperation in your conduct of the work of the Commission. I thank the Secretary-General for his comprehensive report on this agenda item.

My Delegation aligns itself with the statement made earlier by the Permanent Representative of the Republic of Yemen on behalf of the Group of 77 and China.

Mr. Chairman,

This 48th Session of the Commission for Social Development is convened at a time when the world economy remains a mixed picture. Recovery has been seemingly faster than expected but largely uneven and fragile. While an important segment of Asia continues to be viewed as the major power house of the world economic growth, the vast majority of African economies and economies in transition continue to suffer heavily from the global financial and economic crisis. Fiscal risks, macroeconomic imbalances, and hiking commodity prices remain common, resulting in the sharp fall in GDP per capita, serious unemployment and insufficient funding for social welfare, public health and education in a great number of countries, particularly developing ones. It is worrisome to note the Secretary-General’s comment in his report made fifteen years after the World Summit for Social Development in Copenhagen in March 1995 that societies are still far from being stable, just and equal, and that the goal of creating a “society for all” remains elusive.

Mr. Chairman,

My Delegation totally agrees with the conclusions and recommendations made in both the Secretary-General’s report on Promoting Social Integration and the Secretariat’s note on policy responses on employment and the social consequences of the financial and economic crisis, including its gender dimension. We appreciate the new international frameworks and initiatives that have emerged during the past year in response to the global crisis, particularly the one covering food security, trade, a greener economy, the Global Jobs Pact and a social protection floor. We believe in the interwoven and interconnected nature of these frameworks and initiatives, and therefore expect a greater and more dynamic role of the United Nations system in coordinating efforts of Member States and the international community for their effective implementation.

Mr. Chairman,

As an open economy with foreign trade amounting to 160% of its GDP, Viet Nam suffered markedly from the crisis. Last year the GDP growth rate was only 5.32%, the record low rate in a decade, while exports went down by 10%. Recurrent budget deficits led to a significant decline in international reserves, and overspending was 6.9% up, demanding an urgent corrective measure before it becomes uncontrollable.

In the face of such a situation, my Government has since early last year put in place a series of policies and measures, taking into account the need to address both economic and social dimensions in order to respond to the adverse impacts of the crisis and at the same time ensure healthy and sustainable development. As a result, in economic terms, the inflation rate has been maintained below two digits and the consumer price index (CPI) stayed at 6.88%. Attracted by the continued potentials of my country, at their most recent annual Consultative Group Meeting last December, international donors pledged the record high amount of ODA of over USD 8 billion for Viet Nam in 2010. More importantly, in social terms, the poverty rate was brought down to 12.3% from 13.4% the year before. Jobs have been created for another 1.6 million people. Training and re-training has been promoted for workers in all sectors of the economy. The free health insurance and housing schemes for poor people have better reached vulnerable groups, including particularly the elderly, the disabled, and mountain and rural populations. The hard-earned gains in our struggle for poverty reduction and hunger elimination have been fundamentally protected and consolidated.

Mr. Chairman,

As we entered this year 2010, my Government decided to continue with strong socio-economic measures, with social integration representing an important proportion. Agriculture, rural areas and farmers will enjoy greater assistance from the Government in technology transfer, technical training and infrastructural support. Anti-poverty programs will be sped up in a sustainable way and thoroughly assessed to prepare for a new phase of development. Social protection systems will be expanded and their quality improved, particularly in public health and education. Women’s participation will be further promoted in all aspects of life, most immediately in the labor market. More drastic measures will be undertaken to minimize impacts of natural disasters and ensure a greener economy. In this connection, allow me to inform you that at the Davos Economic Forum last week, my Prime Minister announced an initiative on the establishment of an East Asia Fund on Climate Change. We look forward to positive responses from our East Asian neighbours and partners, thus contributing to worldwide efforts aimed at climate change mitigation and adaptation.

Mr. Chairman,

For these measures to be effectively implemented, apart from our own utmost efforts, we count on the support and cooperation from the United Nations bodies and agencies and all international partners. On our part, we are prepared to join hands with you in working for the accomplishment of the commitment which all Governments made in Copenhagen fifteen years ago.

I thank you, Mr. Chairman.


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