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National Assembly targets 6.7-per cent GDP growth in 2017

Update: November, 08/2016 - 11:00
The National Assembly (NA) yesterday adopted a resolution on the socio-economic development plan for 2017, targeting a gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate of about 6.7 per cent. — VNA/VNS Photo An Đăng

HÀ NỘI – The National Assembly (NA) yesterday adopted a resolution on the socio-economic development plan for 2017, targeting a gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate of about 6.7 per cent.

Some 85 per cent of NA deputies approved the resolution at the plenum, which was part of the 14th parliament’s second session.

The plan also targets a 6-7 per cent rise in export-import revenue, and trade deficit accounting for some 3.5 per cent of the total trade turnover.

The consumer price index is expected to increase around 4 per cent, and total social development investment is expected to reach 31.5 per cent of GDP.

Viet Nam is set to have its household poverty rate decline by 1-1.5 per cent. It is hoped health insurance will cover 82.2 per cent of the population next year.

The plan continues to target a stable macro-economy, economic restructuring associated with growth model reform, and better competitiveness. It also looks to encourage sustainable start-ups, ensure social welfare, proactively respond to climate change, increase environmental protection, and step up administrative reforms.

Under this plan, the country will press on with protecting independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity, national security, political stability, and social order and safety.

It is also going to upgrade diplomatic activities, international integration, and promote a peaceful and stable environment for national development.

In the newly-passed resolution, the parliament calls on the entire Vietnamese people, both at home and abroad, to bring into play patriotism, capitalise on internal strength, and make use of opportunities to carry out the 2017 socio-economic development plan as best as possible.

Foreign Trade Law

The National Assembly (NA) yesterday continued its second plenary session to discuss the proposed Foreign Trade Management Law.

The majority of NA deputies agree with the necessity of the law in order to adjust and strengthen State management tools for foreign trade activities, and ensure effectiveness and transparency of foreign trade in accordance with international commitments.

The law also accelerates administrative reform in managing foreign trade activities while enhancing competitiveness of Việt Nam’s economy in the context of the country’s comprehensive and deep integration into the international economy, NA deputies agreed.

Lê Anh Tuấn, NA deputy from central Hà Tĩnh Province, proposed that the committee drafting the legislation carefully review provisions to ensure compatibility with international commitments that Việt Nam has pledged in joining the World Trade Organization (WTO).

“Regulations on quotas in the law remain general and do not detail clear and relevant principals as stipulated in provision 20 of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT),” Tuấn said.

But others felt the draft law was too detailed.

“Putting these ordinances into the Foreign Trade Management Law makes everyone feel that State management of foreign trade is voluminous, negatively affecting investors and Việt Nam’s business investment climate,” said Bùi Văn Xuyền, NA deputy from northern Thái Bình Province

Vũ Tiến Lộc, deputy from Thái Bình Province agreed that the draft law “covers too many unnecessary contents.”

Some foreign trade management issues are already regulated by other laws, he noted, adding that the legal system will be cumbersome and put more management responsibilities on authorities. For example, regulations on temporary import, re-export and transit of goods are already part of the Customs Law and customs agencies control them effectively and there is no need for them in the Law on Foreign Trade Management.

The draft law on Foreign Trade Management also clarifies the responsibilities of ministries and other authorities in managing foreign trade.

Nguyễn Văn Thắng, deputy from Hà Nội, proposed that the Ministry of Justice and Ministry of Foreign Affairs must be involved in solving international trade disputes among governments.

Clarifying the NA deputies’ opinions on the draft law, Minister of Industry and Trade Trần Tuấn Anh confirmed that the law provides for the management and dispute solving measures of foreign trade, as well as its development.

“The name of the draft law does not conflict with the idea of building a constructive Government to serve the development of enterprises,

“It’s aimed at effective State management, in accordance with international trade and WTO regulations, to which Việt Nam has committed in the spirit of setting up an open, transparent climate, an incorruptible and constructive Government,” he said.

The law compiling committee will continue to listen to deputies’ opinions before complete the draft law and submitting it to the NA for consideration, he said.

Technology transfer revised law under scrutiny

On the same day, Minister of Science and Technology Chu Ngọc Anh, presented a report on the draft revised Law on Technology Transfer.

According to the report, amendments and supplements to the current Law on Technology Transfer aim to create a favourable legal climate to boost technological transfer and reform as well as commercialisation and application of scientific and technological achievements.

Such targets contribute to improving technology competency, labour productivity, economy’s competitiveness along with sustainable development.

Anh said that the revised law includes updates of the current law and removes its shortcomings.

The new section supports mechanisms for intermediary organisations, strengthening supply and demand capacity to advance the scientific and technological market, he said.

The revised law also fosters responsibilities of State management agencies in technical assessment of investment projects in order to limit obsolete technologies.

According to the NA Committee for Science, Technology and Environment, which examined and verified the draft revised Law on Technology Transfer, it is necessary to control foreign technology transfer to Việt Nam and transfer of Vietnamese technology abroad, in accordance with Việt Nam’s current conditions and requirements of international integration.

The committee asked the revised law compiling committee to continue reviewing and amending undetailed provisions while working closely with compiling committees of laws on Supporting Small and Medium Enterprises, Investment, Tax, Business, etc to ensure that the draft revised Law on Technology Transfer abides by legal system. — VNS

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