A Spanish website has posted an article highlighting the importance of Vietnam’s 11th National Party Congress to the future of the country, especially in its external relations.

In his article on the Centre for Political Studies for International Relations and Development’s website, political analyst Alberto Cruz said that the Congress did not only play a decisive role in identifying a direction of the Doi Moi (renewal) process in Vietnam but also the country’s international integration policy.

He divided two decades of Vietnam’s implementation of Doi Moi process into two phases. The first phase began with the sixth National Party Congress in 1986 to 1995 and the second phase commenced after the visit of US President Bill Clinton and the normalisation of Vietnam-US relations, which created the opportunity for Vietnam to open its market, join the World Trade Organisation in 2007 and approach international investment flows.

Differing from other Southeast Asian countries, Vietnam still focuses on social issues and protecting people by specific measures, such as preferential credits for small and medium enterprises, and stronger investment in infrastructure projects to create jobs, according to Cruz.

These facts have helped Vietnam cope with the recent global economic crisis better than other “Asian tigers”, he said, citing the WB’s report that the crisis made a 37 percent reduction in Vietnam’s growth rate, while the rates in Thailand were 155 percent, Malaysia, 137 percent, US, 219 percent, EU, 224 percent and Japan, 335 percent reduction.

Australian radio and the “Connect Asia” programme of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) news on Jan. 10 said that the 11 th National Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam would debate personnel selection for the 2011-15 Party Central Committee and the 10-year socio-economic strategy from 2011-20.

According to the source, this year’s Congress will take place over nine days, from Jan. 11-19 instead of four or five days as in previous congresses, which enables nearly 1,400 delegates, representing more than 3.6 million Party members, to discuss and consider issues carefully.

The source quoted Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung as saying that Vietnam needed an abundant workforce with high quality professional skills, a modern infrastructure system and effective operation of State-owned enterprises with an aim to turn into a “modern industrial country” by 2020.

The Vietnamese government targeted a yearly average per capita income of 2,000 USD in its draft socio-economic development plan for 2011-15./.