Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — The Government is determined to take drastic measures to improve business climate and competiveness indicators to reach the average level of ASEAN 4 countries by the end of this year.
The determination was evident by the Government’s issuance of Resolution No 19 on Monday listing tasks to improve the business environment and national competitiveness this year with vision to 2020.
The rationale for the resolution is that despite continuous efforts made by the Government, ministries, agencies and localities to tackle difficulties for businesses and create favourable conditions for investors, most of the indexes of business environment have not reached the level of ASEAN 4 countries Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and the Philippines.
In addition, according to the Global Competitive Report of the World Economic Forum, Việt Nam’s competitiveness ranking for 2016 dropped to 60 from 56 in 2015, behind all of the four ASEAN countries.
It is the fourth consecutive year the Government has issued such a resolution calling for continuous and pro-active engagement of stakeholders in improving the business environment and enhancing national competitiveness.
This year, the Government asked leaders of ministries and agencies, and chairpersons of provincial and municipal People’s Committees to build action plans to execute the resolution.
The action plan, which is scheduled to be finalised before February 28, must clearly define responsibilities of each division and progress towards implementing each task.
The Ministry of Planning and Investment was assigned to be the leader in monitoring indexes of business climate and national competitiveness. The Ministry of Science and Technology was asked to keep track on the improvement of indexes of creativity and renovation, while the Ministry of Information and Telecommunications was told to lead activities to enhance e-government indexes.
These ministries must give guidance to local authorities and government units to study the method of calculating the indicators and their significance as well as provide timely information to international organisations so that they will have trustworthy foundations for assessing and ranking.
The Ministry of Planning and Investment was directed to work with the ministries of finance and labour, invalids and social affairs, and Việt Nam Social Insurance to improve indexes on startups and investor protection, partly by cutting administrative procedures.
It must also liaison with the Ministry of Justice and the Government Office to build a decree on amendments and supplements to existing legal documents to clear business obstacles related to investment licensing, land, bidding and environment.
The Ministry of Finance will adopt technological advances to manage imports-exports and improve the efficiency of inspection at border gates and electronic customs clearance.
The Ministry of Industry and Trade must submit the draft amendments to the Law on Competition before December to the National Assembly to ensure fair competition and control the monopoly effectively.
The Ministry of Science and Technology was requested to co-operate with the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to revise and propose amendments or abolishment of unsuitable regulations of standard certifications and quality control.
The Government also asked the Việt Nam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), the Việt Nam Lawyers’ Association, the Việt Nam Bar Federation and business associations to conduct surveys on the implementation of administrative procedures and make relevant recommendations to the Government.
The VCCI will work to improve the quality of the provincial competitiveness index rating and collect feedback from the business community to report to the National Council on Sustainable Development and Competitiveness Improvement and the Government Office.
Municipal and provincial authorities were requested to launch one-stop shop models to simplify and shorten time for administrative procedures involving taxes and fees.
By the end of this year, Việt Nam aims to shorten the time a company has to spend on doing tax and social insurance procedures to 168 hours per year -- 119 hours for tax and 49 hours for social insurance.
It is targeting reaching the level of ASEAN 4 countries in terms of business environment, becoming one of the top 70 or 80 countries in terms of startups and protection of minority investors, respectively, and being among the top 30 countries listed by the World Bank in transparency and access to credit.
By 2020, the country is striving to be among the top 40 countries ranked by the World Economic Forum in access to loans and achieving the average level of ASEAN 5 countries (Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines) in terms of the Global Innovation Index released by the World Intellectual Property Organisation.
On e-government, comprehensive reform will be conducted in telecommunications infrastructure, human capital and online service indexes, so that the country can be rated among the top 80 countries in the UN e-government ranking by the end of this year and among the top 70 countries by 2020.
By the end of this year, most public services involving citizens and businesses will be launched at Level 3 and Level 4, which allow online payments and applications. — VNS