|A production line at Ha Phong Export Garment JSC in the northern province of Bac Giang. Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has ordered the industry and trade sector to accelerate business restructuring and administrative reforms. — VNA/VNS Photo Vu Sinh.
HA NOI (VNS) — Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has required the industry and trade sector to accelerate business restructuring and administrative procedure reform.
At a meeting of the Ministry of Industry and Trade held here last Thursday on the sector's performance in the first nine months of this year, Dung said the country should stop compensating for essential goods such as electricity, coal and petrol, which must be sold under the existing market mechanism.
He added that it was for this reason that the sectors should be public and transparent regarding all information relating to costs, prices and taxes.
The Prime Minister asked the ministry to review and propose a new mechanism and policies that would speed up assistance to enterprises and people, thereby attracting more investments and improving the country's business environment.
He noted shortcomings which deterred companies from doing business that needed to be changed for the country to catch up with the current pace of global development.
Regarding the restructuring of enterprises, especially State-owned enterprises, he underscored the need for a specific road map that must be strictly followed.
The Government leader also requested the ministry to continue its efforts to expand domestic and foreign markets while speeding up the campaign to encourage the Vietnamese people to prioritise the purchase of Vietnamese products.
At the same time, it was crucial to make full use of all opportunities created by existing free trade agreements while staying active in the process of negotiations for new deals, he added.
The Prime Minister also hailed the sector's achievements, as average export growth in the past three years was 20 per cent per year.
Speaking at the meeting, Industry and Trade Minister Vu Huy Hoang said the country would achieve a trade surplus of US$1.5 billion this year. The country's total exports will reach $148 billion to $150 billion, a 12-13.5-per cent year-on-year increase, while total imports will reach $146.5 billion, an 11-per cent year-on-year increase.
"The sectors will likely fulfill all the set targets this year, with industrial production index rising by seven to 7.2 per cent, exports growing by 12 per cent to $148 billion and retail revenue expanding by 12 per cent," Hoang said.
He added that all indicators increased year-on-year. The industrial production index increased by 6.7 per cent while exports inched up by 14.2 per cent to hit $109 billion, generating a trade surplus of nearly $2.5 billion.
Total earnings of the retail and service sectors were estimated at $2.1 billion, an 11.12-per cent year-on-year increase. "Targets for exports and trade surplus this year will be surpassed," Hoang said.
Meanwhile, the ministry has been stepping up equitisation and non-core capital withdrawal of its State-owned enterprises, with good results seen in the Viet Nam National Textile and Garment Group (VINATEX) and the Viet Nam National Coal-Mining Industries Group (VINACOMIN), Hoang noted.
Figures from the ministry revealed that during the nine-month period, VINACOMIN completed its divestment in three units, bringing out VND1.6 trillion ($75.1 million) of its VND1.8-trillion ($84.5 million) investment in the non-core businesses.
The Viet Nam Chemicals Industries Group also completed its divestment in four units worth VND247 billion ($11.59 million). The Electricity of Viet Nam earned VND104.7 billion ($4.915 million) from its divestment in two units.
The ministry's groups and corporations completed divestment in 27 of 96 units, accounting for one-third of the total. The Viet Nam National Oil and Gas Group (PVN), Viet Nam Paper Corporation and Machines and Industrial Equipment Corporation witnessed the slowest restructuring as they each completed divestment in only one unit. — VNS