Magalie Marais is an Associate with the Australian Centre for Corporate Social Responsibility (ACCSR). She visited Vietnam in February 2011 as a guest lecturer at the University of Hanoi in partnership with La Trobe University (Melbourne).
Vietnamese people can be proud of their country. After years of military conflicts, the fight for independence and international economic alienation, Vietnam’s economic growth and the reduction in poverty are impressive by any measure.
According to the data provided by the AusAid program, since 1993 Vietnamese growth in real gross domestic product has averaged around 7.5 per cent a year and the poverty rate has been reduced from 58 per cent in 1993 to 13 per cent in 2008.
While the country’s success has been driven by its export orientation, market liberalisation and job creation in the private sector, challenges lie ahead in its efforts to maintain high growth rates and meet poverty reduction targets.