Nghi Sơn Refinery and Petrochemical Complex in Nghi Sơn Economic Zone. — VNA Photo
HÀ NỘI — Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc emphasised the important role of the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) and asked it to take the initiative in solving development conundrums while addressing a conference in Hà Nội on Thursday.
Reviewing the country’s achievements last year, the Government leader said the MPI made many substantial contributions with a reformed mindset, creativity and good coordination with other ministries and localities.
The PM also pointed out certain problems the ministry needs to handle, noting that obstacles in terms of public investment regulations have led to slow capital disbursement. The building of regulations on new economic models, the sharing economy and digital economy has yet to match real requirements, and support for small- and medium-sized enterprises remains modest, he said.
PM Phúc asked the MPI to submit proposals and make strategies and plans for turning the aspiration for a “powerful Việt Nam” into reality.
He told the MPI, in the face of the Fourth Industrial Revolution which opens up chances for developing countries to keep up with rich nations but also poses numerous challenges, to deliberate what Việt Nam should do to capitalise on this revolution.
Việt Nam currently has certain advantages in the digital economy race, so the ministry should give policy recommendations so that localities consider the Fourth Industrial Revolution and digital economy as a foundation and momentum for economic restructuring and fast and sustainable development, he said.
Assigning tasks to the MPI in 2020, the PM asked it to propose ways to help the country avoid falling into the middle-income trap, a big risk that can come true if corruption and group interests occur or wrong policies are issued.
To reach the target of having one million businesses in 2020, he requested the MPI to create more favourable conditions for firms to take shape and grow into big enterprises that are able to compete with international rivals. Besides, it is also necessary to boost foreign investment attraction so that the committed foreign capital this year will surpass the US$38 billion in 2019.
Stressing the importance of the year 2020, PM Phúc said the MPI must not be complacent or lack drastic actions.
In 2019, Việt Nam jumped 10 places in the Global Competitiveness Report of the World Economic Forum but dropped one place in the World Bank’s Doing Business report.
The country aims to enter the top four in ASEAN in terms of the business climate and reach the OECD’s standards. However, given the above mentioned fact, the improvement of its ranking is very challenging, he said, asking the MPI to devise a breakthrough policy to address this problem.
Improving the country’s macro-economic performance and pushing for reforms are among top priorities for the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) in 2020, said Minister Nguyễn Chí Dũng.
Dũng said 2020 is an important year for Việt Nam, as the country rushes to complete its socio-economic development objectives set in the 2016-20 five year plan. It will also set the tone for the next development period of Việt Nam.
Speaking of 2019, he said despite difficulties and challenges, Việt Nam’s economy has seen robust growth. The economy managed to achieve all 12 development objectives for the second year in a row.
The country’s macro-economy has remained stable, with inflation under control, while maintaining an impressive growth speed – among the fastest in the region and the world, said the minister.
A number of highlights on the MPI’s working agenda last year include the introduction of the Law on Public Investment which gained approval of the National Assembly in June, and the promotion of a large number of young officials to hold key positions in local offices. This is part of a long-term plan to build the ministry’s quality human resource, said Dũng, adding it would allow young officials to gain more experience before they can be entrusted with higher responsibilities in the future.
The MPI also implemented numerous measures to push ahead with administrative reforms, assist localities across the country and increase efficiency and accountability among the ministry’s staff.
For 2020, Dũng said the MPI’s highest priority is to provide all the necessary support for the formation of Việt Nam’s ten year socio-economic development strategy (2021-2030).
In addition, the ministry and its agencies will continue to keep the central Government and the Prime Minister’s Office with up-to-date and accurate economic data as well as analytics and insights in order to build sound policies to improve the economy’s efficiency and the country’s ability to compete in international commerce.
The MPI will continue to assist the central Government in leading the country further integrate into the global economy and attract greener and high-tech foreign investment to Việt Nam. The ministry will also act as a bridge to connect FDI businesses and Vietnamese enterprises.
Representatives and leaders from localities urged the ministry to take measures to speed up major investment projects, such as the Nghi Sơn Economic Zone in Thanh Hóa Province and the road network connecting Long An Province and HCM City.
Chairman of the Government Office Mai Tiến Dũng said the MPI plays an important part in the Government’s efforts of administrative reform, cutting the number of business conditions and implementing e-Government.
Dũng urged the ministry’s staff to work alongside businesses with the ultimate goal of making it easier for firms to conduct business in accordance with the country’s laws and regulations. — VNS