Labourers work at a construction site of a bridge as part of highway 5 in Hanoi, Vietnam. Photo: Reuters

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) found Vietnam has been spending the most on public and private infrastructure of any Southeast Asian nation in percent of gross domestic product.

Bloomberg reports the country’s push to attract investment has seen the average spending over recent years rise to 5.7%, compared with China’s 6.8%. Some neighbors lag far behind, with Malaysia and Thailand spending less than 2%. Indonesia and the Philippines don’t fare much better at less than 3%.

According to ADB estimates, Southeast Asian economies will need US$26 trillion in infrastructure spending by 2030 to meet needs.

While Vietnam is leading the race now, others are hoping to catch up. Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte set a goal of upping the number to 7% for his country through 2022, while momentum is speeding up for large infrastructure projects in Indonesia.

Asia Times Financial is now live. Linking accurate news, insightful analysis and local knowledge with the ATF China Bond 50 Index, the world's first benchmark cross sector Chinese Bond Indices. Read ATF now.