Vietnam Maintains 20% of State Budget Spending for Education in 2015

Vietnam’s government is estimated to spend VND224.826 trillion (about $10 billion) on education and training in 2015, equal to approximately 20% of the state budget expenditure for this year or 5% of the  gross domestic product (GDP) recorded in 2014. The spending to total budget expenditure ratio is almost unchanged from previous years. Of the sum, the National Assembly, the country’s top legislative body, has allocated VND184.07 trillion for regular spending in education, including VND152 trillion from the local budgets and VND32.07 trillion from the central budget. Particularly, VND33.75 trillion will be invested in education and training development, with VND14.1 trillion sourced from the central budget and VND19.66 trillion from the local budgets. The money will go to construction of new kindergarten classrooms, secondary schools, and upgrade of current facilities. Most of the budget will be prioritized for tuition subsidies and assistance for kindergarten development in poor and remote regions. Meanwhile, the Ministry of Finance is planning to cut regular expenditures of ministries and centrally-run agencies in 2016 by 10% from the projection for 2015, as state budget revenues are seen to grow modestly. The budget spending for education will unlikely to retain its 20% proportion next year. In the first eight months of this year, Vietnam’s state budget expenditures increased 8.2% year-on-year to VND733.3 trillion, meeting 63.9% of the year’s plan, while budget revenues were VND618.14 trillion, resulting in a fiscal deficit of VND115.18 trillion. Of total expenditures, the government spent VND511.65 trillion on regular expenditures, national defense and security, VND110.9 trillion on development projects, and VND104.55 trillion on repaying aids and debts. (Thoi Bao Kinh Te – Vietnam Economic Times Sept 23 p2)