by H.E Mr. David fall, British ambassador at the seminar held
by hedo on 28 March 2000
On July 1st my wife and I will leave Vietnam for the
UK after 3 years working in your beautiful and fascinating country.
Over the past 3 years I have visited almost all provinces of Vietnam.
In some of the fascinating
visits we traveled in the highland and remote areas of the country.
We really enjoyed the beauties of the nature in these regions
and also the colourful diversity of the highland ethnic minorities.
Then we can realize that there was a need to improve the conditions
for education and life of the people there.
Since lending in Vietnam on April 1997 Professor Trinh Ngoc Trinh
and his colleagues have been our friends and also our advisers
on many development issues in regard to the highland areas including
to the Minister for Overseas Development Madam Clare Short in
1998 when we visited Vietnam.
Working with HEDO the British Embassy has assisted many projects
including that of English teaching in Kontum to the soybean growing
in Bac Kan province. We are very happy to see the steady cooperation
between HEDO and the British NGOs as well as volunteers.
This cooperation has been in small scale and usually at local
level. However, after the visit by Minister Short the British
Government has increased the development program for Vietnam and
at the moment two major multilateral projects have been implemented
in the highland areas. The first project with the value of US$
4 million run by the Hygiene and Clean Water Center and the UNICEF
to improve the supply of clean water for 14 mountainous provinces.
The second project with the value of US$ 30 million for the development
of road system in remote areas and run by the Transport Ministry
and the WB. The highland provinces will also receive US$ 10 million
in this assistance.
All these projects, small and big, have a common
aim that is to care for the benefit of the poorest in the highland.
Over the last 3 years have seen a new relationship between Vietnam
and the UK. HEDO has played a valuable role in this process. I
congratulate HEDO on its 10-year foundation and looking forward
to a more valuable contribution by HEDO in 10 years to come.