Our traditional development operations will be phased out during this time, in accordance with the country strategy for the years 2009–2013.
Vietnam has been one of the countries Sweden has prioritized for receiving development aid for many years. In 2008, Sweden contributed SEK 251 million to development in the country. One of Sweden’s targets of its development co-operation is that Vietnam’s economic development should focus on the poor and be as democratic as possible.
Projects for local democracy
One example is a programme that Sida is supporting named the Chia Se Poverty Alleviation Programme, which is abbreviated to Chia Se. Chia Se is working to support Vietnam in decentralization, promoting local democracy and combating poverty.
Title deeds important
Other contributions within public administration have focused on the design of a new law on land rights and title deeds. Title deeds are hugely important to poor people in rural areas.
In the Quang Tri province, Sida has contributed towards 80 per cent of households now having proof of title deeds, compared with just 5 per cent in 2000.
Procedures for applying for land rights have been made public, and processing times have shortened.
Vietnam trusts in Sweden
Sweden’s long-term commitment and support for Vietnam has built good relations and strong trust.
This has helped Vietnam to accept cooperation with Sweden within areas that are considered sensitive for Vietnam, such as corruption and democracy. Sida believes that an interest in Sweden and in Swedish solutions could ease the transfer to participant cooperation between players in the two countries.
Judicial system in Vietnam
Sweden was the first donor within the judicial area and is stressing the importance of developing an independent judicial system that respects and protects human rights and which can fight corruption effectively.
Sweden is contributing to the modernization of lawyer training and has also helped to establish a national bar association.
System for legal aid
Sweden is also supporting the construction of a system for legal aid. This is aimed at poor women and men, minorities, children, the disabled and people infected with HIV/Aids.
Free legal advice, dispute settlements and the opportunity for legal aid in court proceedings are offered through the system.
Legal advice is also offered to far-flung villages, which are regularly visited by mobile legal aid teams.