Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has asked ministries, sectors and localities to stick to the set targets of stabilising the macro economy and keeping the inflation rate equal to that of last year at about 6.8 percent.

While chairing the monthly cabinet meeting in Hanoi on July 30, PM Dung urged Government agencies to closely control prices and resolutely apply market prices for electricity and fuel in a transparent and open manner while ensuring the balance of supply and demand of goods, especially essential ones.

He asked the State Bank of Vietnam to continue driving the interest rate to suit the trend of inflation decline, helping stabilise the currency market and macro-economy, and make it easier for enterprises to access capital.

The Ministry of Finance was required to seriously implement finance-budget tasks, ensure a balance of budget collection and spending, and prevent tax frauds and evasions.

At the same time, relevant agencies were also requested to drastically restructure the economy, especially State-owned enterprises and banks. PM Dung stressed the need for the agricultural restructuring to ensure the sustainable development of the sector.

He urged the acceleration of land clearance for key projects as well as the disbursement of official development assistance (ODA) and foreign direct investment (FDI).

“Ministries, sectors and localities should work closer together in market and price control, while strictly dealing with smuggling and trading of low-quality goods,” he said.

Switching to social welfare issues, the Government leader called for a comprehensive package of measures to continue the social welfare policy with focus on underprivileged groups.

He suggested more mechanisms to support the poor, ethnic minorities and farmers in order to improve their lives, adding that hurdles in the way of providing houses for low-income earners, workers and students should be cleared.

The PM directed the Ministry of Health to review and keep a close eye on the vaccination process and step up measures to ease hospital overloads.

He also asked ministries, sectors and localities to be more active in supplying precise and full socio-economic information to the media, while considering feedback from the public to promote social consensus.

PM Dung commented on the socio-economic situation in the first seven months of this year, saying that it is on the right track and positive changes have been seen with comprehensive results, paving the way for the success of the tasks for the whole year.

He also pointed out that many sectors have faced unsustainable and slow growth, especially agriculture and industry.

Speaking at the meeting, Minister of Planning and Investment Bui Quang Vinh said the socio-economy has seen good results in the January-July period.

He noted that the consumer price index in July edged up 2.68 percent, the lowest growth level in 10 years. Meanwhile, total seven-month exports were estimated at 72.74 billion USD, up 14.3 percent year-on-year.

The index of industrial production (IIP) rose 4.5 percent, 6 percent and 7 percent in the first and second quarters and July respectively. The number of newly-registered enterprises in the first seven months rose by 8.4 percent year-on-year.

In addition, social security and welfare policies were continued to be implemented, helping improve the lives of people, especially the poor, unemployed and ethnic minorities.

However, Minister Vinh noted that the economy is also encountering many difficulties due to the risk of high inflation in the last months of the year, enterprises’ poor access to capital, low credit growth and slow budget collection.

During the meeting, cabinet members also sought measures to remove hurdles for the market, promote production, and rein in inflation in line with maintaining economic recovery and settling difficulties for the property market.

According to Minister of Agriculture and Rural development Cao Duc Phat, the market is the biggest problem agriculture is facing. He suggested that other ministries join hands with his ministry to expand export markets for agricultural products.

Minister of Construction Trinh Dinh Dung said his ministry has coordinated with relevant agencies and localities, especially Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City , to effectively disburse the 30,000 billion VND housing credit package.

Deputy PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc highlighted the efficiency of Resolutions 01/NQ-CP and 02-NQ-CP in controlling inflation, maintaining reasonable growth and ensuring social welfare.

He said ministries, sectors and localities should pay more attention to land clearance for key projects, strengthening administrative reforms to create the best conditions for citizens and businesses to work with Government agencies.

Pressing the significant role of agriculture, Deputy PM Hoang Trung Hai called for more attention to measures to protect agricultural products in particular and export commodities in general in order to avoid possible economic losses.

Meanwhile, Deputy PM Vu Van Ninh stressed the need to settle bad debts, clear the way for capital flows and speed up restructuring.-VNA