The country's gloomy economy has been making headlines for months, but there may be light at the end of the tunnel, says Dang Van Thanh, chairman of the Viet Nam Accounting and Auditing Association (VAA).
What do you think about the outlook of our economy in 2013?
In my opinion, we should be optimistic about the outlook of our national economy. However, to ensure our hopes become reality, the Government should demonstrate its resolve to do all it can to help our economy overcome its challenges.
In 2012, we scored some notable achievements, including our control of the inflation rate (6.8 per cent against the projected figure of under 10 per cent by the National Assembly) and the consumer price index (CPI), which were much smaller than those of 2011 and the average figures in the period 2004-2011.
In 2012, Viet Nam earned $114.6 billion in export turnover – an increase of 18.3 per cent against that of 2011.
However, our economy remains in a very difficult situation. Our macro economy is not stable while inflation is still an issue and it could return at any time.
In addition, a huge inventory and bad debt have been the biggest hurdles for our economy last year and this year.
We must carry out the plan to restructure our economy, improve the operation of state owned enterprises, boost the capital market and settle outstanding debt and bad debt.
The Government expects that in 2013 the inflation rate will be capped. Do you agree?
There are different reasons behind our success in capping the inflation rate last year.
In my opinion, the most effective factor was the monetary policy while the fiscal policy was closely attached to the high lending interest rate and low credit growth which was less than 50 per cent of the year before.
In my opinion, the unstable macro economy may lead to the return of inflation – and it could potentially be quite fierce.
So in your opinion, what will happen to our economy in 2013?
It is hard for me to say what will happen. It all depends on the macro economy's level of stability. Let's pin our hopes on the recovery of many enterprises and markets. However, the key factor should be strong policy, good management and the firm determination of the Government.
Right from the beginning of 2013, the Government has adopted a series of measures to restructure the national economy. What are your comments?
In my opinion, the Government should be stronger handling the problems of bad debt and the huge inventory while improving the management and administration capacity to speed up the process of economic restructuring and the market.
The success or failure of any measure introduced by the government will depend heavily on the handling of these concerns.
Another point I want to emphasise here is the great need for transparency and accountability by all agencies and individuals in their domains. — VNS