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February 04, 1969 - Image 7

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The Michigan Daily, 1969-02-04

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Tuesday, February 4, 1969
11

THE MICHIGAN DAILY

Page Seven

Tuesday, February 4, 1969 THE MICHIGAN DAILY Page Seven

$30 BILLION COST:
Study prices Viet self-support

SAIGON 01) - The 10-year
cost to make South Vietnam
self-supporting will be about
$30 billion, according to an eco-
nomic report being prepared for
President Nixon and President
Nguyen Van Thieu
A big portion of the money
would have to come from the
United States although some
would be raised by Saigon, some
from private enterprise and
some from other nations, nota-
bly Japan.
The report, based on the as-
sumption of peace in Vietnam,
is the work of a team headed
by David E. Lilienthal and Prof.
Vu Quoc Thuc, a respected eco-
nomist now minister of state
in the South Vietnamese Cabi-
net.
It was prepared over the past
two -years by the Development
and Resources Corp., a con-
.sultant firm headed by Lilien-
thal, and about 55 South Viet-
namese specialists of various
┬žorts under Prof. Thuc. Lilien-
thal in earlier years served as
chairman of both the Tennessee
Valley Authority and the U.S&
Atomomic Energy Commission.
The report is to be submitted
to the U.S. and South Viet-
namese governments shortly.
Although it has not been made
public, Lilienthal disclosed its
genef-al approach in the quar-
terly Foreign Affairs and ex-
perts in Saigon and Washington
are familiar with most details,
of the 700-page study.
In his article Lilienthal said
the "gap" between public and
private investment and the
amount of necessary foreign
aid was $2 billion. Experts who
have seen the report feel this
figure is extremely low. They
say it is a hard nosed, work-
able study that found South
Vietnam's basic economic foun-
dation surprisingly strong de

spite the ravages of war. None-
theless, the report does not soft-
pedal the difficulties that the
nation will face.
It says that the first three
years must emphasize basic re-
construction, roads, agriculture
and education. It then specifies
some 35 economic projects to be
started within the next two
years.
One of these is the vast plan
for development of the Mekong
River's potential in South Viet-
nam, Thailand, Cambodia and
Laos. Another is the restoration
of lines to power stations in the
central highlands which can be
put back in production quickly.
The cost .of the Mekong pro-
ject is conservatively put at
$400 milion and much of this is
expected to come from Asian
nations. Japan has voiced a
willingness to make a substan-
tial contribution in money and
experts.
The blueprint for South Viet-
nam's economic future foresees
a mixed economy of free enter-
prise, joint ventures and gov-
ernment projects.
It also specifies that changes
in land policy will be required
and suggests that grants of land
to South Vietnamese soldiers

would be one step toward this.
This would ease unemployment
among demobilized soldiers and
encourage people to return to
the countryside.
Some experts who have work-
ed on the report suggest that
as the war dwindles) South Viet-
nam's army could be partly
shifted to such tasks as road-
building and the repair of dikes
and similar facilities.
Although hasty demobilization
of the more than one million
men in the armed forces was
not foreseen, it was believed that
some demobilization plus end of
military-related activities would
create the need for 500,000 new
jobs within two years of any
cease-fire.
This, the\ report said, was a
serious problem but it could be
met.
The report also proposed the
convening of an international
working level conference of na-
tions which might give aid to
South Vietnam's postwar de-
velopment. It recommended that
this conference be under the
auspices of the Asian Develop-
ment Bank. In his article, Lil-
lienthal said the agenda for the
conference should include the
problems of North Vietnam.

}

The report emphasizes the
need for massive increases in
the nation's spending for schools
and notes that the people and
the land are South Vietnam's
two major resources.
Experts who have seen the
report say the aim is to build
South Vietnam toward a sus-
tained growth of 6 per cent an-
nually.
There is every reason to be-
lieve this could be quickly ac-
complished, these experts say,
if Washington and Saigon give
it solid support. One unanswer-
ed question is the future of
Prof. Thuc. Americans who have
worked with him feel that his
continued voice in Saigon's eco-
nomic policy is almost essential
to the plan-s success.
Lilienthal wrote in his article:
"If South Vietnam receives the
necessary aid and if the coun-
try adopts appropriate policies
in trade and commerce, it is
reasonable to expect that it can
achieve economic independence
within 10 years, or less."

Your roommate
cantsle
in the dark?
Think it over, over coffee.
TheThink Drink,.:,.
For your own Think Drink Mug, lend 75t and your name and address to;
Think Drink Mug, Dept. N, PO. Box 559, New York. N.Y. 10046. The Inte.rnational Coffee Organization,

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