A joint programme between the Vietnamese Government and the United Nations on gender equality was signed today.
With a total budget of over US$4.6 million, of which more than US$4.5 million comes from the Spanish Government, the programme aims to improve the capacity of the national and provincial authorities and other duty bearers to effectively implement, monitor and evaluate the Law on Gender Equality and the Law on Domestic Violence Prevention and Control.
Addressing the signing ceremony, Minister of Labour, War Invalids and Social Affairs Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan said: “Vietnam has a long history of promoting gender equality and women’s empowerment. This process has been clearly reflected in the enactment and enforcement of the Vietnamese Constitution and legislation, including labour and family legislation”.
“The Government’s commitment to gender equality is also reflected in policies as well as in implementation from the central to grassroots level. Vietnam is a signatory to the Convention on Human Rights which ensures equality between men and women. However, institutional capacity in the area of implementation and reporting, gender the Government’s commitment towards gender equality in Vietnam,”she added.
This is the first time that so many UN agencies in Vietnam have come together to work on one joint programme. By combining the collective experience and knowledge of twelve UN agencies, a high-quality programme will be developed which will help advance gender equality in Vietnam.
“By bringing together the co-ordinated efforts of twelve UN agencies, the joint programme clearly supports the aim of the one UN Initiative – to reduce overlap and deliver more coherent and effective development support to Vietnam. However, what makes this programme special is that it is a joint initiative. The UN will work closely with our three implementing partners: the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, and the Ministry of Planning and Investment as well as many other Government and civil society partners”, said John Hendra, United Nations Resident Co-ordinator.
The joint programme will contribute to the achievement of Millennium Development Goal 3 (MDG3) that aims to promote gender equality and empower women. The programme will work across the health, education and economic sectors and in particular will target vulnerable women and girls.
At the signing ceremony, Soledad Fuentes, the Spanish Ambassador to Vietnam stressed: “The progamme will contribute to the achievement in Vietnam of MDG3 by targeting vulnerable women and girls. We believe empowering women is essential to reducing poverty and attaining democracy, peace and sustainable development. on the issue of gender, we are completely aligned with the Vietnamese Government agenda and we recognise mutual accountability in addressing gender equality”.
Vietnam passed the Gender Equality Law in 2006 and the Domestic Violence Law in 2007 and together these laws codify the State’s accountability for strengthening gender equality in public and private life.