More than 5 million people living in the poorest rural and mountainous areas of Vietnam are expected to benefit from improved access to sanitation and water supply, thanks to a $200 million credit approved today by the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors.

The funding supports the Results-based Scaling up Rural Sanitation and Water Supply Program, which aims to provide better water supply to 255,000 households and improve sanitation and water supply facilities at 2,720 schools and clinics in 21 provinces in the Northern Mountains and Central Highlands regions.

Overall Vietnam has made progress in broadening water supply and sanitation coverage, but important regional differences remainsaid Victoria Kwakwa, World Bank Country Director for Vietnam. “In regions that lag behind, the lack of access to basic services, together with poor hygiene practices, leads to serious health issues, including high infection rates for diarrhea and parasitic diseases and stunting among ethnic minority children.”

The program supports Vietnam’s National Target Program for Rural Water Supply and Sanitation, as well as the country’s decade-long commitment to meeting the Millennium Development Goals, and the new Sustainable Development Goals.

The World Bank’s innovative financing instrument, Program for Results, links disbursement of funds directly to the delivery of verifiable results. This program is the third World Bank-supported results-based program in Vietnam. The $200 million credit approved today comes from the International Development Association (IDA), the World Bank Group’s fund for the poorest countries. The Government of Vietnam will provide an additional $25.5 million to finance the project.

(Source: WB)