Vietnam must be prepared for the bad economic circumstances that may arise at a time when the tension over a drilling rig China has illegally placed in Vietnamese waters remains high, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has ordered.
Relevant ministries and departments, as well as governments of localities countrywide must adopt solutions to deal with these bad economic situations, chairman of the Government Office, Minister Nguyen Van Nen told a media briefing on Tuesday, citing an order the premier made at a regular government meeting late last month.
The ‘bad circumstances’ in this case, Nen elaborated, include the likelihood that China may halt its import-export activities at the border with Vietnam, or even worse, withdrawing Chinese contractors in charge of projects in Vietnam and send them back to their home country.
Prime Minister Dung warned of these scenarios amid tension in the East Vietnam Sea with China regarding the Haiyang Shiyou 981 oil rig Beijing has unlawfully positioned in the Vietnamese waters for the past two months.
China has deployed hundreds of vessels, including warships, to guard the drilling platform despite strong protests from Vietnam.
The oil rig spat has caused many negative impacts on Vietnam’s socio-economic development, Nen said, citing the premier.
“The Prime Minister has underlined Vietnam’s policy to develop an independent economy,” the minister said.
“Vietnam equally cooperates with all economies in the world and relies on no single one.”
Prime Minister Dung suggested expanding and diversifying the Southeast Asian country’s import-export markets, and encouraging Vietnamese people to use locally made products.
Speaking at the government meeting, chief officials of many localities said that these bad circumstances would affect Vietnam’s economy, but the impacts would not be considerable.
“Local officials said the impacts would not be so serious that they cannot be solved, and the government eventually agreed upon these remarks,” Nen said.
It has been said that cross-border trading activities at some northern provinces may be ceased, but authorities in these localities asserted that everything remains normal.
“Exports are only limited due to tightened management over cross-border trading activities,” Nen said.
As for the projects that are being contracted to Chinese firms in Vietnam, Nen said these constructions “remain in progress as planned.”