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Tran, P.L, 2009 –– River Basin Organisation Activity in Vietnam: Exploring a Way Forward for the Vu Gia - Thu Bon River Basin Coordinating Organisation, Central Vietnam

Phuong Lien Tran (Viet Nam)

Lien Master of Integrated Water Management studentVietnam has followed the world trends in water resources management, particularly Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) for nearly a decade.

Water reform in Vietnam including the promulgation of the Law and sub-laws on water resources management, the establishment of Apex body and River Basin Organisations (RBOs) has expressed the opinion of the Government to follow this approach. However, inconsistent legal frameworks and overlaps among roles of institutions have limited the implementation of IWRM in Vietnam. 

Lien Tran final projectThe Vu Gia – Thu Bon River Basin has two existing RBOs; nevertheless, they are not effective. The basin with its rapid hydropower development rate has been concluded as to be unsustainable development. Consequently, there is a need for an effective RBO to manage the basin. Recently, the Decree No.120/2008/ND-CP has established a new River Basin Coordinating Organisation (RBCO) model for Vietnam’s large basins with a primary function of coordinating ministries, sectors and organisations in each  basin.

The aim of the Master thesis is to analyse this new model applied in the Vu Gia – Thu Bon River Basin and suggest some preliminary directions for this organisation. To compare with predecessor RBOs, this new RBCO has been given more functions and shown more effort in engaging stakeholders in basin management. Nevertheless, this new model is still following a top-down and centralised approach. Given the current conditions of the country (marked by overlapping functions among ministries and sectors, inconsistent legal documents, limited funding for RBOs, shortage of human and technology capacity to apply IWRM management instrument), it is not easy for RBO activity to be successful. This thesis recommends the Vu Gia – Thu Bon RBCO and others in Vietnam to be patient and commit to follow the IWRM process to build their strong foundations with the help of the Government, international donor partners and other organisations.

About Phuong Lien Tran

Phuong  Lien Tran is a Hydraulic Construction Engineer. To gain a better overview of the water industry, she completed Master of Integrated Water Management in 2009. Her aim is to contribute her knowledge to a better integrated water management in Vietnam.

> Read more about Phuong Lien's professional background


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