|Farmers harvest rice at Co Do Farm in the southern city of Can Tho. National Assembly deputies yesterday called for technology innovation to ensure sustainable development and economic growth. — VNA/VNS Photo Thanh Vu
HA NOI (VNS) — National Assembly deputies yesterday called for new driving forces, increased resource use efficiency and technology innovation to ensure sustainable development and economic growth in the future.
At the NA discussion, broadcast live on TV, on the country's socioeconomic development this year and development plan for next year, deputy Tran Du Lich from HCM City said that in the last five years, Viet Nam made achievements including a stablised macro economy, expanded foreign trade evidenced by increased exports and better international integration as well as an improved legal framework.
"A stable period paves the way to the development of a new stage," he said.
But he noted that the quality of development was not as good as expected because Viet Nam failed to complete nine out its 21 development targets including hi-tech application and modest labour productivity.
Viet Nam's economy faced shortcomings including the reduction in social investment, the ailment of domestic firms, a heavy reliance on foreign direct investment and a "rob Peter to pay Paul" State budget.
"New driving forces for the economy are needed if Viet Nam wants an economic growth rate of 6.5 per cent to 7 per cent next year," Lich said.
He said the Government should attach more importance to monetary policies, reduce lending interest rates, reform public debts and boost technology applications in agriculture production.
Deputy Ha Huy Thong from central Thua Thien Hue province said that now was the time for the country's economy to grow based on increased productivity and technology application instead of land and natural resources as previously.
Deputy Le Bo Linh from southern An Giang Province said that the country was trapped in the circle of low economic growth, a low level of investment, a low level of saving, a low level of technology and low productivity.
Sciences and technology must be attached to every national development programme and strategy as they are at the heart of business development, Linh said.
Linh also urged the Government to assess development of key economic regions in the country including the Red River Delta region, Mekong Delta region and Central Highland region.
Deputy Thao Hong Son, from northern Ha Giang Province, said that a Government plan on economic restructuring in 2013 outlined the need to promote advantages of six economic regions in the country.
However, the Government and National Assembly did not have a comprehensive review and assessment on changes made in the regions during the three-year reform, Son said.
The assessment was important for future policies for each region, Son said, urging a better co-operation mechanism among provinces in the same region and among regions.
Food safety was also a hot issue in the NA's agenda yesterday morning while the use of banned substances in animal breeding had been detected in southern provinces including HCM City, Dong Nai and Tien Giang.
Deputy Dinh Thi Phuong Khanh from southern Long An province said that food safety was among the issues that most concerned voters.
Voters were very worried that authorities were failing to tackle immoral actions by breeders and traders who wanted to make money regardless of the health of humans, she said.
Viet Nam had banned the use of beta-agonist, including Clenbuterol, Salbutamol and Ractopamine, in husbandry for more than a decade. The chemicals were used to stimulate growth of animals and make them lean. The substances, however, are still being widely used by pig breeders.
Khanh called for relevant agencies to identify the origins of Salbutamol used in animal breeding as the use of the substance normally used in medical treatment was allegedly regulated closely.
Deputy Do Van Duong from HCM City urged the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to clarify the origin of 68 tonnes of Salbutamol allegedly used for breeding, and identify responsibilities of importers.
He also called for breeders and farmers to stop using banned substances and pesticide for better public health.
Agriculture minister Cao Duc Phat said he agreed with Duong and said that the ministry always considered ensuring food safety its top priority task.
"Using banned substances in animal breeding is a crime to fight against," he said. — VNS