|General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong
The Party, army and the people as a whole should strengthen consensus and use all their resources and creativity to take the country further forward on its path of renewal and development, says Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong.
In an interview with the Vietnam News Agency on the occasion of the 85th founding anniversary of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) (February 3, 1930-2015), he reflected on achievements recorded by the country in recent years in the face of numerous difficulties and challenges.
"Recent years have been tough for Viet Nam, with global persistent economic crises and increasingly complex political and security instabilities that increased tensions in a number of communities," he said.
"Although domestic economic growth showed signs of recovery, the situation has yet to stabilise, and the nation remains beleaguered by poor productivity, low quality and limited competitiveness.
"Corruption, ostentatiousness and other social evils are still a concern, and complicated developments in the East Sea dispute have impacted the cause of national construction and defence.
"In this situation, the Party Central Committee, Politburo and Secretariat have worked tirelessly to maintain order in all areas," the Party leader said.
Highlighting the positives seen in 2014, he said the nation's GDP had risen by 5.98 per cent, exceeding the target set by the National Assembly, and export turnover had reached US$150 billion, up 13.6 per cent over the previous year.
Last year, the country attracted $21 billion in foreign direct investment, welcomed eight million foreign visitors and 37.5 million domestic tourists, earning a record of VND230 trillion (roughly $1.1 billion USD) in tourism revenues.
"Impressive progress had been made on the international front, with Viet Nam joining the United Nations' peacekeeping operations for the first time, taking a leading role in building the ASEAN Community, and concluding negotiations for free trade agreements with the Republic of Korea and the Customs Union of Russia-Belarus-Kazakhstan," Trong said.
"All these achievements have elevated the country's relationships with partners and enhanced its position in international and regional forums.
"Viet Nam responded to sensitive developments in the East Sea with timely, flexible measures in accordance with international law to firmly safeguard its independence and territorial sovereignty while maintaining a peaceful and stable environment for national development."
"This had earned the nation kudos from the global community," the Party leader noted.
He said that last year, the first year of implementing the 2013 Constitution, also saw the drafting and issuance of various laws.
|Fish processing:Workers at Southern Seaproducts Technology Co.Ltd.in the southern province of Can Tho process tra fish for export. — VNA/VNS Photo Duy Khuong
During its seventh and eighth sessions, the 13th National Assembly approved 29 bills and 13 resolutions and gave comments on 28 draft laws.
"These documents aim to concretise the Party's new guidelines and viewpoints on economic institutions, state apparatus, and administrative and judicial reforms, thus ensuring human rights as well as the basic rights and obligations of citizens enshrined in the Constitution," Trong said.
Over the years, efforts to build the Party and improve the nation's political system have been stepped up, and the democratic fabric of the Party and the society as a whole has been strengthened," the Party leader said.
"This has laid the foundation for significant advances in 2015."
He reiterated that in "nearly 30 years of its renewal process, Viet Nam has made great achievements, but there was still much to be done in the coming years."
Trong expressed "concern over the poor living conditions of many people in rural areas, especially mountainous and remote regions, and the persistently high poverty ratio.
"To deal with this, Party has defined two key tasks: boosting economic development and improving social welfare. "
He stressed that "all Party guidelines and State policies should ultimately focus on caring for the people and improving their living standards."
"More effective poverty reduction measures will be taken to ensure that all members of society benefit from national growth," he said.
Regarding social issues emerging from the process of industrialisation and modernisation, Trong said that the Party is designing programmes on vocational training and job generation for farmers in areas that have been earmarked for industrial parks in order to mitigate negative impacts.
|Reaping gains:Farmers in the southern province of An Giang harvest their crops in a local field. — VNA/VNS Photo Trang Duong
For localities with great tourism potential like Quang Ninh, Ninh Binh, Da Nang , Hue , Nha Trang and Phu Quoc, the Party chief emphasised the need to "harmonise tourism and industrial development while protecting the natural environment."
"As the nation deepened its international integration, it is crucial that national cultural identities are preserved."
He noted that social problems had led to an increase in crime, degraded morals and lifestyles.
"Therefore, it is necessary to harmonise economic growth with cultural development and social progress so as to realise equality and develop the country in a rapid and sustainable manner," he said.
"Over the last three years, a Party-building resolution issued during the fourth plenum of the 11th Party Central Committee, has been actively implemented in a broad, synchronous way, bringing about drastic changes.
"The practice of criticism and self-criticism has become a regular activity at all party bodies from central to local levels, helping all members adjust their thoughts and actions to prevent and minimise negative behaviour.
"Votes of confidence and other activities were also carried out to combat corruption and waste as part of efforts to realise the resolution's aims, he added.
He hailed advances in the fight against corruption and lavishness, attributing them to participation by the entire political system and the people.
"However, patience and resilience was needed in dealing with the problems' continued challenges and complexities emerging from the fact that the process can damage the interests of those in the upper echelons," he said.
|Folk songs:Local artists in the northern province of Bac Ninh sing quan ho (love duets). The Party has stressed the need to harmonise economic growth with cultural development and social progress. — VNA/VNS Photo Thanh Ha
The Party leader stressed the need for more practical action, as opposed to words or slogans, to fuel the fight.
He suggested that "effective mechanisms be developed to prevent, punish, and ultimately, eliminate corruption".
He also called for "the strengthening of information and education activities to raise awareness and the sense of morality and esteem that would improve public and media involvement in the struggle.
"It was important that Party officials and members realise the pioneer role they play in the successful implementation of guidelines and policies issued by the Party.
"The spirit and enthusiasm of all Party members, indefatigable in the past, now need to be preserved and upheld even more to serve the nation's renewal, construction and defence," he said.
He said the significant role and mission of the Party has stayed true for 85 years and called for further Party-building efforts to ensure its strong, everlasting existence.
In conclusion, the Party chief highlighted 2015 as an important year for Party-building, for the country's cultural and socio-economic development and for its international integration.
He outlined key tasks that the Party, army and people have to undertake this year, including: strengthening macro-economic stability; accelerating implementation of strategic breakthroughs; restructuring the economy in tandem with renovating the growth model; ensuring social security and welfare and improving living conditions; securing independence, sovereignty, peace and stability for national development, and boosting diplomatic ties. — VNA