A learning center on environmental and social sustainability was established in Vietnam on Thursday, the World Bank said the same day on its website.
The facility is meant to foster knowledge exchange and capacity building relating to environmental and social safeguards and standards in the Southeast Asian country, the bank said. The learning center, situated at the Asian Institute of Technology Center at 45 Dinh Tien Hoang Street in District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, will offer capacity building to project management units, district and provincial authorities, consultants, and other stakeholders in social and environmental issues.
The center is established with initial funding support from the Australian government and technical support from other development partners, including The World Bank Group, the Asian Development Bank (ADB), the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and the Asian Institute of Technology Center in Vietnam.
A memorandum of understanding was also signed on Thursday to this effect. “The mission of this center is to help fill the gap in Vietnam’s social and environmental safeguards capacity,” said Victoria Kwakwa, the World Bank Country Director for Vietnam. Vietnam has taken great strides in introducing legislation dealing with social and environmental safeguards in recent years and is seen as leading the way in Asia in areas such as payment for forest ecosystem services, according to Tomoyuki Kimura, Country Director for ADB.
“The challenge now is to ensure that the country develops the necessary technical skills and capacity to effectively implement its safeguard requirements,” Kimura said.
The center is expected to play a critical role in building long-term capacity on environmental and social aspects of development projects and programs in Vietnam on a sustained basis, the World Bank said.