Prime MInister Phạm Minh Chính speaks at the meeting. —VNA/VNS Photo
HÀ NỘI — Government is committed to step up measures to create new momentum, and speed up the disbursement of public investments to spur economic growth in the last quarter of this year, Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính said while chairing a regular Cabinet meeting on Saturday.
The Government expects to create a premise for the first months of 2022, bringing the country to the new normal, the leader said.
With that goal in mind, Chính asked ministries, agencies and localities to focus on building a strategy on economic recovery and development in the new normal as from October 1, and another strategy on pandemic containment.
He urged ministries and agencies to flexibly combine the fiscal policy with the monetary policy, better control inflation, ensure major economic balance, accelerate the disbursement of public investment and ODA loans, ensure the circulation of goods and traveling of people, work harder to remove the “illegal, unreported and unregulated” (IUU) fishing “yellow card”, and optimise opportunities presented by free trade agreements (FTAs).
The PM ordered the removal of roadblocks to projects, increase IT applications and digitalisation, ensure social welfare and improve the efficiency of communication work to create social consensus.
Although the pandemic has been basically brought under control, with decreases in infections and fatalities in HCM City and its adjacent localities, vigilance should be maintained while recovering socio-economic activities according to the set plans, he said.
He stressed the need to fight negative phenomena, corruption and group interests in pandemic combat, saying the procurement of medical equipment must be transparent, avoiding losses.
The leader noted the economic achievements made in September and the first nine months of this year, with GDP growing 1.42 per cent year-on-year, and FDI increasing 4.4 per cent to reach 22.15 per cent between January and September.
He also pointed out limitations and difficulties such as GDP in the third quarter decreasing sharply (6.17 per cent), drop of domestic collection, and low disbursement rate (47.38 per cent).
Also at the meeting, the PM held an online working session with authorities in 63 central-run cities and provinces across the country as well as 705 districts, towns and cities on the prevention and control of COVID-19.
Participants discussed building temporary instructions to safely and flexibly adapt to, and control COVID-19.
Regarding crowds of migrants leaving HCM City and the southern province of Bình Dương for their hometowns, the PM called on them not to move freely to prevent pandemic spread.
Localities should encourage labourers to stay in the cities where they are working to get vaccinated and continue joining socio-economic activities in the host cities, he said.
Two scenarios mapped out for economic growth
The Ministry of Planning and Investment has sketched out two scenarios for economic growth, Deputy Minister Trần Quốc Phương told the press conference following the Government’s regular meeting later the same day.
To meet a growth rate of 3 per cent for the entire year, the national economy must expand at least 7.06 per cent in the fourth quarter. Meanwhile, to fulfil the yearly target of 3.5 per cent, the quarterly growth is set at 8.84 per cent.
The economic performance in the last quarter depends greatly on the implementation of the strategy on safe adaptation to the COVID-19 pandemic, Phương said.
Businesses should restore their operations, even if that means reaching only 80 per cent of their capacity, to spur economic growth, he said, expressing his hope that the quarterly target of seven per cent would be met.
Regarding transport activities, Deputy Minister of Transport Nguyễn Ngọc Đông said the ministry has consulted relevant ministries, agencies and localities to put forth guidance on passenger transportation, which was issued on September 30 and took effect as from October 1.
The provisional guidance on passenger transport by road, rail, inland waterways, sea and air is based on risk classifications in different areas.
Public transport activities in very high risk localities (red zones) are not allowed to operate, except for taxi and app-based vehicles that offer less than nine seats and use vehicle partition and electronic payment.
For localities in high risk or orange zones, public vehicles can only carry half their designed capacity.
Public transport can resume operations as normal in low- and medium-risk localities and regions (green and yellow zones).
All passengers must comply with the 5K message, medical declaration, negative SARS-CoV-2 test (using RT-PCR or rapid antigen test) within 72 hours.
No testing is required for people who have received at least one jab or have recovered from COVID-19 within six months.
Drivers and staff must comply with the 5K message, medical declaration, test for SARS-CoV-2 by PCR or rapid antigen test after developing suspected symptoms.
In medium and high-risk localities, they must be tested for SARS-CoV-2 frequently (once every week).
Drivers in very high-risk areas must have received two COVID-19 jabs or recovered from COVID-19 within six months and have a negative SARS-CoV-2 test result within 72 hours by RT-PCR or rapid antigen test.
Provincial People's Committees will grant permits for road passenger transport activities depending on the pandemic situation in each locality.
The Civil Aviation Authority of Việt Nam will also adjust the frequency of operations in phases depending on the actual situation. — VNS