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PM Dung delivers strong pep talk to Cabinet over economy

Update: August, 28/2014 - 08:49
A production line at Stronics Viet Nam Ltd, Co. located in Dinh Tram industrialisation park in the northern province of Bac Giang. According to the Ministry of Planning and Investment's forecasts, the economy is expected to expand by 5.54 per cent during the first nine months of this year, but difficulties are likely to remain. — VNA/VNS Photo Vu Sinh

HA NOI (VNS) — Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has given his ministers a far reaching pep talk on improving the economy.

Speaking at this month's Cabinet meeting yesterday he highlighted specific tasks required to achieve the Government's 5.8 per cent growth target for this year.

The PM said that any barriers affecting growth in agriculture, industry and the service sector must be removed.

He also demanded easier access to credit, the settlement of bad debts and a crackdown on copied and counterfeit products.

Dung also gave priority to the restructuring of public investment, state-owned enterprises (SOEs), commercial banks and agriculture.

He said that improvements had already been made in the restructuring of public investment, but this needed to continue to avoid inefficiency.

The leader also pushed for a radical and strict approach to reshuffling ineffective SOEs and re-organising banks, saying that "for the sake of the banking system and the people, weak banks must be put under control, undergo acquisitions - or even be shut down".

In terms of administrative reforms, Dung insisted that by the end of 2015, the time taken for customs procedures would have to be halved, and tax claims had to be processed within 10 days instead of the 20 or so at present.

Insurance formalities also had to be processed quicker, accelerating the time they took to process from 12 days to less than four.

Similarly, the PM directed that time frames for procedures on investments, construction, land acquisition and power supplies had to be cut by a third or halved.

The PM also said his ministers must look for and reduce red tape undermining the competitiveness of the economy.

For 2015, he called on them to develop initiatives to achieve an increase in gross domestic product (GDP) of 6-6.2 per cent, higher than the growth target for 2014. This was proposed by the Ministry of Planning and Investment.

According to ministry forecasts, the economy is expected to expand by 5.54 per cent during the first nine months of this year, but difficulties are likely to remain.

The two-day Cabinet meeting will also devise a plan for issuing government bonds overseas; formulate incentives for scientific and technological establishments; develop a pilot mechanism to grant autonomy to public universities; and launch a scheme for updating textbooks. — VNS

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