Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc (Source: VNA)
Dak Lak (VNA) – Poverty alleviation remains a main political task of the Central Highlands region, stated Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc at a working session with the Central Highlands Steering Committee in Dak Lak province on June 20.

He asked the region to promote its comparative advantages, especially rich soil and mild climate, and step up economic restructuring, particularly in the agricultural sector.

He suggested regional localities study and propose amendments to their specific mechanisms to serve socio-economic development, promote the regional connectivity to create key products with high economic values, and expand exports to potential markets like Laos and Cambodia.

They were urged to pay more attention to improving their business and investment environment, increasing their competitive indexes, intensifying administrative procedure reform and encouraging start-ups.

The provinces should stay ready to anticipate opportunities to be brought by new free trade agreements such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement and the EU-Vietnam free trade agreement.

Economic development should be coupled with social security, the PM said, noting that Central Highlands localities need to maintain their cultural traditions to make the region attractive to both domestic and foreign tourists.

Central Highlands comprises of Dak Lak, Dak Nong, Lam Dong, Gia Lai, and Kon Tum provinces.

In the first half of this year, long-lasting drought caused a loss of over 5.4 trillion VND (243 million USD) for the region’s agricultural production. The export market remained instable, and export turnover reported a decrease.

However, the region maintained a GRDP growth rate of 6 percent in comparison with the same period last year.

At the meeting, leaders of regional provinces proposed the Government build a socio-economic and infrastructure development project for the Central Highlands, with sustainable and long-term measures to help the region adapt to climate change.

They also hoped for a particular policy to preserve cultures, languages and handwritings of ethnic minority groups in the region.-VNA