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Vietnam premier targets 5% GDP growth in 2020 despite COVID-19 pandemic

Wednesday, May 06, 2020, 16:03 GMT+7
Vietnam premier targets 5% GDP growth in 2020 despite COVID-19 pandemic
Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc speaks at a government meeting in Hanoi, May 5, 2020. Photo: Vietnam Government Portal

Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has called on all sectors to focus on restarting the economy and striving for over-five-percent GDP growth this year, despite the economic impacts of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

Measures to revive the economy following the negative effects brought about by the epidemic were discussed during a regular government meeting in Hanoi on Tuesday.

At the gathering, PM Phuc stressed that the country must aim for a GDP growth rate of more than five percent in 2020, adding that the government would not accept an economic expansion of 2.7 percent as previously forecast by the International Monetary Fund.

Inflation must also be controlled and kept under four percent this year.

In order to achieve such goals, five important tasks must be completed, namely attracting FDI, boosting exports, enhancing public investment, attracting private investment, and promoting domestic consumption, the premier elaborated.

He highlighted the importance of disbursing the VND700 trillion (US$29.8 billion) worth of public investment within this year.

The government leader asked ministries, agencies, and local authorities to offer support to local firms, to continue improving the business environment, and to expedite major projects.

Minister and Chairman of the Government Office Mai Tien Dung  speaks at a government press briefing in Hanoi, May 5, 2020. Photo: Viet Dung / Tuoi Tre

Minister and Chairman of the Government Office Mai Tien Dung speaks at a government press briefing in Hanoi, May 5, 2020Photo: Viet Dung / Tuoi Tre

The Ministry of Planning and Investment was asked to work with the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Industry and Trade, and relevant agencies to promptly update growth scenarios and adjust targets related to state budget collection, overspending, and public debt.

According to Planning and Investment Minister Nguyen Chi Dung, the agency has proposed many policies to help solve difficulties for businesses and promote disbursement of public investment.

During a government press briefing later the same day, Minister and Chairman of the Government Office Mai Tien Dung stated that other countries have praised Vietnam’s achievements in COVID-19 prevention and control.

The country will continue to follow PM Phuc’s direction to achieve the dual target of pandemic control and socio-economic development, Dung remarked.

The current focal task is fostering production and business activities, creating jobs, ensuring people’s lives, and promoting growth.

Transnational businesses are considering shifting their production facilities, which is both a challenge and a good opportunity for Vietnam, the official said, adding that the country should prepare to welcome a wave of new investment.

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