Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc speaks at a regular cabinet meeting in Hà Nội on Saturday.— VNA/VNS Photo
HÀ NỘI – Việt Nam’s socio-economic situation in April 2019 witnessed many positive signs with macroeconomic stability and surging aggregate demand, Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc told a regular cabinet meeting in Hà Nội on Saturday.
PM Phúc noted with pleasure that a large number of new businesses were established while the country saw a record in attracting foreign direct investment (FDI) with many large-scale projects. The agriculture sector yielded bumper crops and the epidemic of African swine fever was controlled to minimise damage, he said.
According to the government leader, the country’s exports increased significantly and continuously recorded a trade surplus. Inflation was curbed at a low level although prices of some services and petrol were adjusted upwards and the country’s Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) climbed up, ranking second among ASEAN countries.
Regarding the recent hikes in electricity, oil and petrol prices, the PM explained that the increase of power price was in line with rules of a socialist-oriented market economy and had been deliberated carefully by the Government. However, the calculation of electricity price remains unclear and unconvincing, causing public concern in recent days.
In that context, Phúc said he had ordered inspections on the adjustment of electricity selling prices and the calculation method, and then make them public. The Ministry of Industry and Trade and Vietnam Electricity (EVN) must have the responsibility to report this issue to the Government and people, he said.
Through the Private Sector Economic Forum 2019, the PM requested ministries, sectors and localities to push ahead with administrative reforms and improvement of the business environment.
Regarding public investment, the PM said the disbursement remained slow and asked cabinet members to take stronger measures and strictly handle ministries, sectors, localities and investors involved in the disbursement of public investment.
A report delivered by the Ministry of Planning and Investment showed that the consumer price index (CPI) in April 2019 went up 0.31 per cent against the previous month. The four-month CPI rose 2.71 per cent year-on-year, the lowest level in the past three years.
The industrial production index (IPI) expanded 9.2 per cent driven by the high growth of 10.9 per cent in the processing and manufacturing industry.
Total retail sales of goods and services recorded a growth rate of 11.9 per cent, the highest since 2015.
More than 43,000 new businesses were established in the first four months of 2019 with total registered capital of over VNĐ540 trillion (US$23.22 billion). Over 17,000 enterprises resumed their operations, up 53.6 per cent year on year.
The flow of foreign direct investment (FDI) capital reached US$5.7 billion, a year-on-year rise of 7.5 per cent. The total amount of newly registered and added capital increased 28.6 per cent to US$7.5 billion.
The country grossed US$78.76 billion from exports, up 5.8 per cent, including over US$23 billion from the domestic economic sector, up 10.5 per cent, and enjoyed a trade surplus of US$711 million.
During the meeting, cabinet members focused discussions on the implementation of the Government’s resolution on implementing the socio-economic development plan and the State budget in 2019 as well as the socio-economic situation in the first four months of this year.
They also prepared contents for the government’s submission to the seventh meeting of the 14th National Assembly, which is scheduled to take place in late May.-VNS