The Government is confident that inflation in 2018 will be kept under control, Deputy Prime Minister Vương Đình Huệ said on Wednesday. — Photo VGP
HÀ NỘI — The Government is confident that inflation in 2018 will be kept under control, Deputy Prime Minister Vương Đình Huệ said on Wednesday.
During a year-end meeting on price management work this year, the Ministry of Finance forecast that the average consumer price index (CPI) will increase by 3.52 per cent over 2016, meeting the National Assembly’s (NA) goal that the CPI gains would remain below four per cent.
Deputy Governor of the State Bank of Viet Nam Nguyễn Thị Hồng hailed the successful inflation monitoring work, noting that 2017 was the second consecutive year the Government managed to bring the inflation rate close to the NA’s targets.
In 2016, the inflation rate reached 4.75 per cent, slightly under the initial red line of 5 per cent.
A focus on credit growth since the beginning of this year boosted the general economic growth despite delays in disbursing public investment, Hồng said.
Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Đỗ Thắng Hải, meanwhile, said that 2017 marked a breakthrough in efforts to manage prices of essential commodities like electricity, petrol, formula milk and medical fees.
“The price adjustment scenarios developed with expectations of price swings of other commodities proved to match the market reality. Governmental ministries also co-operated tightly and effectively with each other to control the price hike,” he said.
Construction materials more costly
The finance ministry has proposed three CPI forecasts for 2018, all of which remain under four per cent as the NA requested.
Scenarios brought out by the State Bank of Việt Nam and the General Statistics Office of Việt Nam projected a similar CPI index and inflation rates with stable prices for basic commodities.
“The Government is fully able to curb the inflation in 2018 below the rate set by the National Assembly,” Deputy Prime Minister Vương Đình Huệ said at the meeting.
The cost for construction materials, however, is very likely to shoot up next year as work on the national North-South Expressway and the Long Thành Airport kicks off, both the ministries of transport and construction warned.
“Rock and soil mines, though still owned by State, are under the management of private companies which have the right to raise the prices,” Deputy Minister of Transport Lê Đình Thọ said.
He suggested the Government give the investors who win the bid to build the expressway the rights to mine rock and soil to limit the chance that construction material providers take advantage of the demand and unreasonably raise the prices.
The investors will have to return the mines back to the Government after their construction is complete, Thọ added. — VNS