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December 9, 2008

Vietnam to receive $50.5m loan from ADB
The Asian Development Bank said Tuesday it will lend 50.5 million dollars to Vietnam to rebuild areas damaged by typhoons and to support reforms aimed at reducing poverty, reported AFP.

The money supplements a 51-million-dollar loan approved by the Philippines-based lender in 2006, which the bank said was now insufficient due to high inflation.

"Additional damage to rural infrastructure caused by typhoons in 2006 and 2007 has contributed to significant cost overruns," it said.

The loan includes $25 million to help Vietnam carry out policy reforms for its poverty reduction programme.

Even though Vietnam's economy has seen rapid recent growth, the bank said, some 3.4 million people in the country live on less than a dollar a day and 28 million more on less than two dollars a day.

Poverty remains relatively high in rural areas and among ethnic minorities, and high inflation in the first half of 2008 had an adverse impact on living standards, especially those of the urban poor, the bank said. The terms of the loan were not disclosed.

The bank said Vietnam will also get a 500,000-dollar grant from an ADB-run fund to improve the country's capability to anticipate disasters.

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