Viet Nam shows excellent progress in ensuring socio-economic rights: Foreign officials

Update: 09:32 | 25/10/2021
Viet Nam continues to make excellent progress in ensuring socio-economic rights, as reflected through the draft voluntary mid-term report on the implementation of UPR third cycle recommendations, along with other information and data, a UNDP official has said.
Viet Nam shows excellent progress in ensuring socio-economic rights: Foreign officials
Diana Torres, Assistant Resident Representative & Head of Governance and Participation Unit at UNDP Viet Nam. (Photo: Phuong Trang)

Diana Torres, Assistant Resident Representative & Head of Governance and Participation Unit at UNDP Viet Nam, made the commendations during an interview with the media on the sidelines of an international consultation workshop on the report.

She said Viet Nam and many other countries have been heavily affected by COVID-19, expressing her hope that with the measures taken by the government to contain the pandemic and alleviate its socio-economic impacts, more progress would be made in the time ahead.

Citing the report, she said Viet Nam has recorded inclusive results, even compared with other regional countries, in social protection, health insurance, poverty reduction and gender quality.

Stephen Taylor, head of the Internal Political Section at the British Embassy in Ha Noi, echoed Torres, saying Viet Nam has recorded positive results in ensuring socio-economic rights.

He said Viet Nam is developing very quickly and people have more opportunities to access health care and food. The general economy is opening up.

Viet Nam has done very well in COVID-19 containment, particularly during the first stage when Viet Nam locked down very quickly, he said.

Ambassador Giorgio Aliberti, head of the EU Delegation to Viet Nam, also said the Southeast Asian nation managed well COVID-19, particularly in the first year when the pandemic broke out.

He highlighted Viet Nam’s outstanding achievements in ensuring human rights in socio-economic aspects, and pledged that “We are here to help Viet Nam improve in all aspects of human rights” with commitments the country has made in international agreements.

Viet Nam is also making good efforts in trying to take into account vulnerable groups, ethnic minorities and people with disabilities, he said.

“There is a genuine commitment to try to work to be more inclusive,” he said.

Viet Nam shows excellent progress in ensuring socio-economic rights: Foreign officials
At the event. (Photo: BTC)

Viet Nam's voluntary spirit applauded

This mid-term report is the basis for Viet Nam to assess the implementation of the approved recommendations, learn lessons and prepare for the construction of the National Report for the UPR cycle IV expected in 2024.

In this regard, Torres lauded the Vietnamese government for voluntarily taking steps to review the implementation of the UPR recommendations in the third cycle.

“It is a very good expression of goodwill, the political will to make sure that Viet Nam is on the good track of implementing the recommendations that have been adopted,” she noted.

From discussions at the workshop and the mid-term report as well, more actions should be taken to make improvements needed in certain areas that are still lagging behind, she suggested.

Aliberti said the report shows good engagement and commitment on the part of the Vietnamese Government to handle difficult issues.

“And this is a voluntary process and a positive step,” he said.

Taylor also praised Viet Nam’s positive spirit in compiling the document although the country doesn’t have to do.

“The broad structure and content are good,” he told about the report.

In his remarks at the workshop, UNDP Resident Representative a.i. in Viet Nam Terence D. Jones said it is important to recognize that the context in which the report has been prepared is still very challenging.

Appreciating Viet Nam’s efforts, he said the report has provided a framework to discuss these important issues, showing progress in many areas and related work that needs to be done.

He suggested that the report should be more specific on actions to be taken in the next two years, to enable Viet Nam to show more successes.

Good steps towards becoming Human Rights Council member

Viet Nam is running for election to the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in the 2023-2025 tenure with a hope to contribute more to the world’s joint efforts to promote and protect human rights.

The country is honoured to be nominated by ASEAN countries with high consensus to become the bloc’s candidate for a seat in the UNHRC – the UN’s inter-governmental agency comprising of 47 members in charge of promoting and protecting human rights around the globe.

Asked about the possibility that Viet Nam can win a seat at the council, Torres affirmed that “it is very possible,” adding the country is taking good steps towards that goal.

“It will be very important to have Viet Nam in that forum,” she continued. “It will benefit the country in terms of aligning this domestic legal framework with international obligations and standards, and also will help Viet Nam to position as an advocate on human rights at the global level.”

The official also described the midterm report as a voluntary gesture and an initiative from Viet Nam to demonstrate its commitments to human rights at the international level.

As for Viet Nam’s ratification of a number of international conventions on human rights, Torres said “it is a great step” towards becoming more integrated into the world and the global society, and realising its commitments to international standards.

She emphasised the significance of creating a solid, robust legal framework and the justice system in line with international standards.

According to the draft mid-term report on the implementation of the recommendations accepted at the 3rd UPR cycle, Viet Nam has accepted 241/291 recommendations (about 83 percent) at the adoption session of the UPR 3rd Cycle Report at the United Nations Human Rights Council (July 2019).

On December 31, 2019, the Prime Minister of Viet Nam approved the Master Plan to implement the accepted recommendations in Decision No. 1975/QD-TTg, which directed the development and submission of the Mid-term Report on the implementation of the UPR 3rd cycle recommendations.

To date, Viet Nam has implemented 199/241 recommendations; of which 32/241 recommendations are ongoing or have been partially implemented and 10/241 recommendations will be considered implementation at a suitable time.

Viet Nam will continue to implement the accepted UPR cycle III recommendations on the basis of the Master Plan for Implementation of the Recommendations approved by the Prime Minister in Decision No. 1975/QD-TTg in 2019.

In the coming time, Viet Nam wishes and is willing to share information and experiences to strengthen international cooperation, improve capacity in developing the National Report and implement approved UPR recommendations.

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(Source: VNA)