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Development assistance in Vietnam

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Pillar 3 — Economic recovery in Vietnam

Promoting women's economic empowerment

Australia is increasing women's economic empowerment by encouraging greater female participation in the labour market and global value chains. This includes supporting Vietnamese farmers, logistics providers and tourism operators to revive and improve their livelihoods, especially businesses led by women and people from minority groups.

Women, especially those from rural and ethnic minority areas in Vietnam, are much more likely than men to be excluded from economic opportunities, and to derive livelihoods from lower value, less skilled and less secure work. Women from ethnic minority groups are less likely to secure waged employment and Vietnamese women overall have less access than men to land, credit and technical training. Many ethnic minority women also have poor financial literacy and less influence over decisions within the home and the community.

Vietnam's National Strategy on Gender Equality 2021-2030 commits to narrow the gender gap, create conditions and opportunities for women and men to participate, to enjoy equality of achievement in all spheres of society and life, and have the opportunity to contribute to the sustainable development of the country to their fullest potential. Australia is working to support women's economic empowerment, including for those most excluded.

The Australia in Vietnam Gender Equality Strategy 2022-2027 is guiding Australia's whole-of-government approach in Vietnam. The Strategy will deepen our efforts on gender equality and women's and girls' empowerment while substantially increasing attention to the socio-economic priorities and inclusion of people with disabilities, ethnic minority groups, and to LGBTI people. The Strategy is framed around the value of ‘equality' to support the rights of all people to make the most of their lives - with dignity, safety and respect.

Australia will focus its support on Vietnam's northern mountainous areas, which have a higher incidence of extreme poverty. Consistent with our economic partnership, we will complement the efforts of the Government of Vietnam by identifying, trialling and scaling-up new approaches to closing gender gaps in economic livelihoods in these areas, including by working with the private sector. We will also support programs and policies that better empower women.


$20.5 million, 2017-25

Aus4Reform is helping to relieve key constraints to growth of the private sector (domestic and international), increase Vietnam's competitiveness, and promote regional and global trade. It will help strengthen the evidence-base to support economic reform in line with Vietnam's emerging commitments under regional and international economic cooperation agreements. The program engages international and domestic experts on key policy issues and works with a range of stakeholders to build support for reform. The program also draws on contemporary Australian reform experience and supports institutional links with Australian economic agencies including the Productivity Commission and the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.

Aus4Reform works with four key agencies in Vietnam: the Central Institute for Economic Management, the Vietnam Competition and Consumer Authority, the Institute for Policy and Strategy in Agriculture and Rural Development, and the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Emerging priorities can be addressed through a flexible funding mechanism, which can be accessed by a range of additional organisations including the Communist Party Economic Reform Commission and the Economic Committee of the National Assembly.

Related documents*

Name of documentYear publishedType
Aus4Reform Design Document2017Design
Aus4Reform fact sheet2022Fact sheet
Vietnam Aus4Reform Review2022Evaluation
PAPI Research and Advocacy Programme mid-term review and management response2023Mid-term review report and management response

Australia-World Bank Strategic Partnership in Vietnam Phase Two

$50 million, 2017-26

The second phase of the Australia-World Bank Strategic Partnership in Vietnam (ABP2) aims to share knowledge and strengthen development policies and programs through policy dialogue, dissemination of analytical work and capacity building. The program focuses on six key areas: low carbon infrastructure; economic management and growth; climate resilience in the Mekong Delta; inclusion; digital transformation; and gender equality.

Related documents*

Name of documentYear publishedType
Australia-World Bank Strategic Partnership (ABP) Phase 2 & The Vietnam Private Sector Development Partnership fact sheet2023Fact sheet
Australia-World Bank Strategic Partnership in Vietnam Phase 2 Mid-Term review report and Management response2019Mid-Term review report and management response

Vietnam Private Sector Development Partnership

$15 million, 2022-27

The Vietnam Private Sector Development Partnerships (VPSDP) is delivered by the International Finance Corporation (IFC). The program supports Vietnam achieve its development objectives sustainably by promoting private sector development, transitioning to a green economy, supporting green financing and enhancing gender inclusion.

Related documents*

Name of documentYear publishedType
Australia-World Bank Strategic Partnership (ABP) Phase 2 & The Vietnam Private Sector Development Partnership fact sheet2022Fact sheet


$30 million, 2018-24

Through the Aus4Transport program, Australia is supporting Vietnam to develop the transport sector by providing early stage project preparation. Australia is prioritising multilateral development bank-financed projects to demonstrate the value of high quality project preparation in accelerating approval processes and reducing long-term maintenance costs. The project will develop national priority transport infrastructure projects to the point where they are ready to begin construction. Lessons from the preparation of these projects will inform policy reforms for the Ministry of Transport that will improve project preparation and help deliver value for money. Aus4Transport is managed by DT Global.

Related documents*

Name of documentYear publishedType
Aus4Transport Investment Design2017Design
Aus4Transport – Mid-Term review report and management response2022Mid-term review report and management response
Aus4Transport fact sheet2022Fact sheet


$31.5 million, 2018- 27

Aus4Innovation is supporting the Government of Vietnam to prepare for emerging challenges and technological transformation by building a stronger national innovation system. Key elements of the program include digital foresighting and mega trends analysis, a science commercialisation initiative, a competitive grants mechanism and a policy exchange program. CSIRO is the implementing partner.

Related documents*

Name of documentYear publishedType
Aus4Innovation fact sheet2022Fact sheet
Vietnam Aus4Innovation Independent Review2022Evaluation


$86.4 million, 2016-25

Aus4Skills (formerly Vietnam-Australia Human Resources Development Partnership) is supporting Vietnam to access and use high-level professional and technical knowledge, skills and competencies to contribute to the country's sustainable economic and social development. The program is building enduring links with Australia. The program components include Australia Awards Scholarships in Vietnam, the Australian Alumni program in Vietnam, promoting industry linkages with vocational education and training, higher education capacity building, advancing women in leadership and the Vietnam Australia Centre.

Support is delivered using a range of skills development tools: Australia Awards Scholarships, Australia Awards short courses and other informal learning opportunities such as workshops, study tours and technical assistance. Aus4Skills seeks to empower and provide opportunities for women, people with disabilities, people from remote areas and ethnic minorities. Aus4Skills also enables implementation of the Australian Alumni in Vietnam Strategy 2016-21. Aus4Skills is managed by Coffey.

Related documents*

Name of documentYear publishedType
Vietnam Aus4Skills: Mid Term Review and management response2019Mid Term Review and management response
Aus4Skills fact sheet2022Fact sheet


Aus4Equality is an umbrella initiative that includes the following investments:

  • The Gender Responsive Equitable Agriculture and Tourism (GREAT) program (2017-27) that improves the social and economic status of ethnic minority women in the northwest of Vietnam through engagement in tourism and agriculture.
  • The Ending Violence Against Women and Children (EVAWC) program (2021-25) that will strengthen law and policies, enhance prevention and increase response services.
  • The Investing in Women regional initiative (2016-23) that applies innovative approaches to improve women's economic participation as employees and as entrepreneurs, and to influence the enabling environment.
  • Technical support for revision of Vietnam's Gender Equality Law (2022-25) so the Law is more inclusive of all genders and gender expressions; and define, prevent and control all forms of gender-based violence and harmful practises.
  • Livelihoods recovery for women in southern Vietnam impacted by COVID-19 (2022-23).
Name of documentYear publishedType
Aus4Equality fact sheet2022Fact sheet

Gender-Responsive Equitable Agriculture and Tourism (GREAT)

$67.4 million, 2017-27

The goal of the Gender-Responsive Equitable Agriculture and Tourism (GREAT) program is: Women, particularly ethnic minority women living in Lao Cai and Son La, are empowered through their economic engagement, and experience greater gender equality at home, in the workplace, within communities, and through responsive governments.

The program focused on agriculture and tourism to identify specific sectors that lend themselves to opportunities for women's economic empowerment and to work with multiple stakeholders to address constraints and generate opportunities. The enabling environment for women's empowerment will be strengthened by targeted policy and institutional engagement with provincial, district and commune-level government agencies. There is a need to continue and scale up outreach and work within communities to shift social attitudes around gender equality, with a view to enhancing women's participation in decision-making and leadership, promoting a more equal division of unpaid work, and reducing gender-based violence (GBV).

The Provincial People's Committees of Lao Cai and Son La are GREAT's primary government counterparts.

GREAT is managed by Cowater International.

Related documents*

Name of documentYear publishedType
Gender-Responsive Equitable Agriculture and Tourism (GREAT) Investment Design Document2016Design
GREAT Mid Term Review and Management Response2022Mid Term Review and management response

Related links

Aus4Equality – GREAT

Investing in Women

$12 million, 2017-23 (contribution towards $102 million initiative)

Investing in Women is working in Vietnam to promote increased employment opportunities for women in the formal sector, and the expansion of women-led small to medium enterprises. The initiative also seeks to promote women's leadership and decision-making in workplaces and businesses. The Vietnam component of this multi-country investment started in 2017.

Related documents*

Name of documentYear publishedType
Investment Design – South East Asia Investing in Women Initiative2015Design
Investing in Women fact sheet2017Fact sheet
Investing in Women Phase 2 Investment Design Document2018Design
Mid-term review report2021Mid-term review

Related links

Her Turn

$0.83 million, 2018-26

Australia is working with KOTO (Know One, Teach One) to support vocational training and entrepreneurial skills development for disadvantaged rural and ethnic minority women in Vietnam. The program objectives include:

  • Empower disadvantaged and ethnic women economically by providing hospitality and entrepreneurship skills, employment and long-term career development opportunities.
  • Empower female hospitality professionals through leadership development.

Related links

Her Turn Program website

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