Nobel Prize Winner Praises Viet Nam's ten-year Strategy

11 Oct 2001

Ha Noi - Professor Joseph Stiglitz, who was recently awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics, has expressed a positive view on Viet Nam. During a series of high level consultations organized by UNDP in Hanoi this past June, Stiglitz commented that: "The new ten-year socio-economic development strategy has been developed in a way that has engendered broad consensus. The strategy is one that attempts to ensure equity and stability at the same time that it promotes growth. It embodies a deliberate and gradual transformation of the economy. Indeed, I believe that without equity and stability, one cannot attain sustained growth."

Professor Stiglitz was visiting Viet Nam within the framework of UNDP's ongoing advisory assistance to the Government in the implementation of the country's new Ten Year Socio-economic Development Strategy 2001-2010.

"Professor Stiglitz is well known internationally as a sympathetic and reliable friend of developing countries, and a world class independent thinker and advisor offering alternative views" said UNDP Resident Representative Edouard Wattez, and "we are obviously very pleased that he was so enthusiastic about participating within the framework of our ongoing policy advisory services to the Government."

During 1993-97, Dr. Stiglitz was the Chairman of the U.S. Council of Economic Advisors under President Bill Clinton. Following three distinguished years as Chief Economist of the World Bank, Dr. Stiglitz left in early 2000 to pursue independent policy thinking and research. Professor Stiglitz has taught and lectured at most of the world's very best universities including Stanford, Yale, MIT, Princeton, Columbia, Oxford, Cambridge and others.

Stiglitz, and his American colleagues, George A. Akerlof and A. Michael Spence, were yesterday awarded Nobel Laureate in Economics by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences "for their analyses of markets with asymmetric information".

While in Viet Nam, Professor Stiglitz had private meetings with Prime Minister Phan Van Khai, Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Manh Cam; Trade Minister Vu Khoan and State Bank Governor Le Duc Thuy, on a variety of policy issues and challenges facing Viet Nam. Stiglitz also met with the National Committee for International Economic Cooperation; delivered a public lecture at National University on "Public Policy for Knowledge-based Development"; and participated in a session of UNDP's  Monthly Donor Group Forum, a regular monthly forum of the ODA community organized by UNDP.

Stiglitz has researched and written extensively on a number of policy challenges of great relevance to Viet Nam including: The Challenge of International Economic Integration for Transitional Economies; Lowering the Risk of Market Failure; The Role of the State; Institution Building for Successful Transition; Mitigating Negative Social Impacts from Integration; Public Policy for Knowledge-based Development; and Second Generation Reform Strategies.

According to Robert Glofcheski, UNDP's Chief Resident Economist, "Stiglitz was very positive about his consultations with Viet Nam's leaders and policy makers, and plans to return to Viet Nam during 2002 within the framework of UNDP's policy advisory assistance to the Government".

Contact Information

UNDP Public Information Unit, phone 942149