|Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính speaks during an online meeting with HCM City authorities. VNA/VNS Photo|
HCM CITY — Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính urged HCM City's leaders and agencies to continue the “dual goals” for the rest of the year at an online meeting yesterday.
Speaking at the event, Chairman of the HCM City People’s Committee Nguyễn Thành Phong has proposed a number of solutions to the Government to achieve its “dual goals” of containing the COVID-19 pandemic and reviving the economy as requested by the PM.
“One of the proposals is to enable further decentralisation of power for the city to ensure its sustainable development,” Phong said.
The city has also proposed that the government approve the budget retention rate of 23 per cent instead of the current 18 per cent over the next five years. In other words, it seeks to keep more of its own revenue rather than turn it over to the central government.
“HCM City has the lowest budget retention rate of all cities in the world, and this should change,” according to Phong.
He also asked the PM to issue a list of State-owned enterprises to be equitised in the 2021-2025 period and approve a plan on restructuring State-owned enterprises as well as the public investment plan for the 2021-2025 period.
The city has also recommended that a plan for specific policies for the new Thủ Đức City be issued in the second quarter of the year.
Regarding the HCM City – Mộc Bài expressway, the city asked that 100 per cent of capital be sourced from the central budget for compensation and site clearance for the project.
City seeks private funding for vaccines
The city has asked permission from the Government to seek private capital to carry out vaccinations for all citizens.
The city has so far vaccinated about 59,900 people. All people who had reactions after the shot have been monitored, and all are in stable condition, according to Phong.
He said the fight against the outbreak remains the top priority, adding: “The city is willing to sacrifice short-term economic benefits to ensure its long-term development.”
Phong said the city has basically contained the outbreak and will continue to strictly control illegal entrants.
The Department of Health has been asked to prepare a prevention scenario for the fourth wave of the outbreak and a scenario for a possible 30,000 cases as directed by the Prime Minister.
It also plans to build field hospitals and increase testing capacity of up to 15,000 samples a day.
The city is strengthening pandemic control at airports, railways, roads and waterways. It has re-established checkpoints equipped with devices and border guard command forces to ensure COVID-19 control at city gateways.
Since the beginning of the outbreak in January last year, the city has recorded a total number of 267 COVID-19 cases, including 69 community cases.
Regarding the current outbreak, as of April 27, the city had recorded one case related to the chain of infection in Hà Nam Province. At least 244 patients, accounting for 91.3 per cent of the total cases, have recovered. The city is treating 23 cases, with no deaths reported.
The city has given 431,846 tests for high-risk groups in the city.
Phong said the city has ensured political and national defence and security, and social order and safety, for the upcoming elections of deputies to the 15th National Assembly and People’s Councils at all levels for the 2021-2026 term.
The city’s Gross Regional Domestic Product (GRDP) reached VNĐ329.6 trillion in the first quarter, up 4.58 per cent year-on-year. According to the Department of Planning and Investment, the city’s total retail sales of goods and revenue from consumer services in the first four months was up 7.9 per cent year-on-year. — VNS