The industry and trade sector celebrated its 60th anniversary (May 14) and received the State’s Independence Order, first class, at a ceremony in Hanoi on May 9.

On May 14, 1951, President Ho Chi Minh signed a decree to change the name of the Ministry of Economics to the Ministry of Industry and Trade. The date was made the sector’s traditional anniversary.

Addressing the ceremony, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung commended the sector’s staff on their efforts, outstanding achievements and great contributions over the past 60 years of development.

He said the sector should continue to exert their best to achieve the goal of turning the country into a basically industrialised nation by 2020 with industry and service making up around 85 percent of the country’s GDP.

The sector should strive to raise the industry-construction added value by 7.8-8 percent per year and export revenues by 12 percent over the next five years in order to help reduce trade deficit and balance import-export by 2020, he said.

The national industry has attained an average growth of around 15 percent over the past decade and its industrial products have basically met domestic consumption requirements and contributed to exports.

The country’s export revenues in 2010 were 92 times higher than 1986. The nation has set up economic and trade relations with more than 230 countries and territories. Its import - export revenues now equal to 150 percent of the nation’s total GDP.

Trade and services activities in the country have mushroomed with the establishment of the modern systems of goods distribution such as supermarkets, commercial centres besides traditional markets nationwide, meeting the increasing requirements of production and people’s daily life./.