The price-stabilised-product system should be developed nationwide and coordination among enterprises in creating a "goods reserve" should be improved, a conference was told on May 29.

The Ministry of Industry and Trade held the conference to evaluate the price stabilisation programme and to discuss whether and how to expand it.

Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Ho Thi Kim Thoa said the programme together with policies to help enterprises were among tools to control the consumer price index and prevent speculation.

Under the programme, she said, essential commodities such as rice, sugar, oil, meat, eggs, vegetables and seafood products were sold at 5-10 percent lower than market prices.

However, price-stabilised products had not reached residents in remote rural areas, said Ha Noi Department of Industry and Trade Deputy Director Nguyen Van Dong.

Dong said the distribution network should be enhanced in traditional markets, rural areas and industrial zones to better serve low-income earners and ensure they enjoy the benefits of the programme.

Vissan Director Van Duc Muoi said enterprises needed to be provided with preferential loans to manufacture and store goods for the price stabilisation programme.

"It is also important that enterprises co-ordinate with each other to ensure stable raw material sources for production and a smooth transition between production and distribution," Muoi said.

Director of the Domestic Market Department Vo Van Quyen said many localities now provided support to manufacturing enterprises, instead of mainly retail enterprises as in previous years.

"The price stabilisation programme was not non-market," Quyen said. He pointed out that enterprises got Government loans to reserve necessary goods during economic difficulties.

HCM City Department of Industry and Trade Deputy Director Le Ngoc Dao said the price stabilisation programme should encourage the participation of other economic sectors besides the Government.

She said that this year the city called for credit institutions and commercial banks to join the programme to help enterprises get access to loans at reasonable interest rates (about 6 percent for short term and 10 percent for long term).

Thoa told the conference that the ministry would have policies to encourage enterprises to join the programme by themselves without receiving loan support from the Government.

During 2012 and Tet holiday, a total of 1.803 trillion VND (85.86 million USD) was provided to 45 out of 63 provinces and cities to participate in the price stabilisation programme. About 300 enterprises got involved in the programme, 20 percent of which did not get loan support from the Government, the ministry's report showed.-VNA