The fact that Vietnam’s Northwestern mountainous region inhabits many minority groups and is bordered with Laos and China results in its distinguishing social condition. Although Vietnam has been successful accomplishing the market economy, this region has been left behind and has one of the highest poverty rates due to poor accessibility and administrative services. The provincial governments in the region have established their respective Socio-Economic Development Plans, and sector development programs.
However, most of them have neither reflected the regional development strategies nor are their plans consistent with adjacent provinces. As a result, it is not possible to establish a well-balanced overall development policy in the region. To fully address this problem, a MP study on the improvement of rural living conditions covering the whole region was conducted.
The objectives of the study included the following: