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Desperately seeking model countries: The World Bank in Vietnam

  • Cling, Jean-Pierre
  • Razafindrakoto, Mireille
  • Roubaud, François

Vietnam is a very important country for the World Bank. It is the first recipient of IDA credits. It is also presented by the Bank as a model country for development success, especially in terms of poverty reduction. At the same time, the Bank is very active in Vietnam: it is the first provider of development aid; it is also the leader in economic research. Starting from a detailed diagnosis on the Bank’s activities in Vietnam and on the contents of policies it promotes in this country, this paper analyses the political economy of the relationship between the Bank and the Vietnamese government. Since there is no IMF programme in Vietnam, the Bank is the main government partner among donors. But the Bank’s influence over Vietnam’s development path is limited. The Vietnamese government has always refused to adopt policies imposed by foreign organizations and the Vietnamese institutions are strong enough to be able to form an alter ego for the Bank and to achieve “ownership” of public policies. One could almost say that Vietnam is more important for the Bank than the latter is for Vietnam, especially because the Bank gains a political advantage image-wise from what it can hold up as a success story due to its work.

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Paper provided by Paris Dauphine University in its series Economics Papers from University Paris Dauphine with number 123456789/4308.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Publication status: Published in DIAL Document de travail, 2009
Handle: RePEc:dau:papers:123456789/4308
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