Vietnam with a high vaccination rate and experience from the past outbreaks is confident to reopen the economy.
|Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh at the meeting. Photos: Nhat Bac|
“During a difficult phase, there would be no perfect solution but only an optimum one. The country, therefore, may miss opportunities for development if keep waiting.”
Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh stressed the view during a monthly Government meeting held today [January 28].
According to Chinh, Vietnam has been able to put the pandemic under control. So far, the country has received nearly 212 million doses of vaccines, 178 million of which were administered.
The rates of eligible people from 18 years of age having been given the first, second, and third shots are 100%, 95.7%, and 22.3% respectively; for children aged 12 to 17, the rates of first and second shots are 95.2% and 86%, in that order.
Chinh, however, warned of the high risks from Omicron variant as well as an increasing number of infection cases in many localities, requiring a cautious approach from the localities to stand ready amid emergency situations, especially during the Lunar New Year festive period.
Among the solutions, Chinh expected local authorities to continue the vaccination program during the Tet, and soon purchase vaccines for children from five to 12 years old.
He urged to take measures to enhance the capabilities of the preventive healthcare system and timely support provinces/cities, if needed, to ensure the situation is under control.
|Overview of the meeting.|
Record high number of businesses return to the market
With Vietnam posting a strong economic performance by late 2021 with a GDP growth in the fourth quarter at 5.22%, the situation continues to gain strong momentum right from January, Chinh said, referring to stable macro-economic conditions and low inflation rate.
Among the highlights was the rate of businesses returning to the market of 194% year-on-year in January, the highest to date, he continued.
While the economic performance was positive, Chinh suggested more efforts needed to prepare for external shocks and unpredictable situations in the future.
As Tet is around the corner, the prime minister expected the Ministry of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs (MoLISA) and localities to focus on ensuring social welfare and that everyone, especially social beneficiaries and vulnerable groups, is able to enjoy Tet.
Chinh urged all ministries and provinces/cities to speed up disbursement of public funds right from the beginning of the year, as well as pushing for greater simplification of administrative procedures in this regard.
The State Bank of Vietnam (SBV) is tasked with keeping the credit growth in check and ensuring that capital would be channeled into priority fields.
The Ministry of Industry and Trade should adopt measures to ensure the balance of supply-demand of goods, and provide sufficient electricity for the economy.
The Ministry of Finance is responsible for managing the fiscal policy and finalizing regulations of the stock market.
Chinh asked the Ministry of Education and Training and the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism to soon announce a timeline for the reopening of schools and tourism activities, including a clear plan to deal with cases of Covid-19.
Chinh expected the Government to soon announce a resolution on the implementation of the socio-economic recovery program that has been approved by the National Assembly for the country’s rapid and sustainable development.