At the conference of the Steering Committee for the Central Highlands. (Photo: VNA)

Dak Nong (VNA) – Central Highlands provinces should continue to effectively carry out the Party and Government’s resolutions and directions on socio-economic development, said Minister of Public Security Senior Lieutenant General To Lam, who doubles as Head of the Steering Committee for the Central Highlands.

He made the statement at a conference held in Gia Nghia town, the Central Highlands province of Dak Nong on December 19 to review the steering committee’s work in 2017.

Lam stressed the key missions of the Central Highlands in the coming time, which include addressing land issues, preventing deforestation, protecting natural resources and ecosystem and promoting sustainable poverty reduction, socio-cultural development and social security.

He asked the regional provinces to pay attention to consolidating the political system at grassroots levels and to carry out the resolution adopted at the fourth plenum of the 12th Party Central Committee, which aims to enhance Party building, and prevent and curb ideological, ethical and lifestyle degradation as well as “self-evolution” and “self-transformation” among party members.

Under the leadership of the Party and Government as well as coordination from local authorities, the steering committee has worked to boost production and improve the livelihoods of ethnic minority groups and to develop the economy, making significant contributions to the development of the Central Highlands region, Lam noted.

In 2017, the region’s Gross Regional Domestic Product (GRDP) picked up 8.09 percent year-on-year to more than 165.4 trillion VND (7.28 billion USD). Meanwhile, per capita income in the year exceeded 41.6 million VND (1,800 USD), up 5.02 percent from 2016.

Agricultural production recovered after droughts, storms and floods thanks to investment in high-tech agriculture. Currently, the region is the country’s key coffee and pepper production zone, with 582,149 hectares and 71,000 hectares respectively, yielding nearly 1.4 million tonnes of coffee bean and more than 120,800 tonnes of pepper.

The region’s export revenue topped 2.66 billion USD in 2017, up 22.71 percent from 2016.

Thanks to renovation in administrative procedures and market support, the Central Highland provinces have seen an increase in the number of businesses. It is home to 23,330 enterprises, 14.9 percent more than in 2016.

The provinces, including Dak Nong, Dak Lak, Giai Lai, Kon Tum and Lam Dong, have attracted 235 domestic projects worth 103.3 trillion VND (4.55 billion USD) and nine foreign direct investment projects valued at 109.9 million USD.-VNA