6.7 percent GDP growth rate not impossible

02:15' PM - Tuesday, 06/06/2017

“GDP growth has important significance for Vietnam as it creates resources for investment & development, generates jobs, and increases the budget revenue to spend more on investment and social welfare, contributing to political stability,” Nguyen Chi Dung, Minister of Planning and Investment (MPI), said recently in an interview with Thoi Bao Kinh Te Sai Gon.

With economic results in the first four months of the year below the average performance in previous years, the National Assembly (NA) is afraid that GDP growth in 2017 can hardly meet the 6.7 percent target.

However, the government will not propose NA to adjust the economic growth target in its third session.
He said the government still targets GDP growth rate of 6.7 percent this year, although economists and NA deputies doubt the plan’s feasibility.

2017 is the second year of the 5-year economic development plan. In 2016, Vietnam had a growth rate of 6.21 percent, and if it cannot reach 6.7 percent GDP growth rate this year, it will be more difficult to implement the 5-year plan.

“If Vietnam does not grow rapidly, it will lag behind other regional countries. In some aspects, we already lag behind, and we have to speed up,” Dung said.

He said he agrees with economists that it is necessary to stabilize the macroeconomy and curb inflation. However, once Vietnam does this, it needs to accelerate development.

“We need to maintain macroeconomic stability, and we need to develop more rapidly as well. This is the principle,” he said.

The minister said there are signs of positive international economic and trade recovery. International organizations all predict that the world economy is recovering in short term.

He said that domestic conditions are not as bad as they were last year when provinces in the central region had to face severe drought, saline intrusion and epidemics. Agriculture has recovered considerably while consumption is good.

Foreign direct investment (FDI) and domestic investment have improved. The number of tourists has increased sharply. Exports have increased rapidly. And the manufacturing sector has been growing well.

The government will not try to reach 6.7 percent growth rate at any cost and it won’t exchange the environment for economic growth.

However, the government wants to take full advantage of the opportunities and potential Vietnam has to speed up development.

“6.7 percent growth rate is difficult, but it is not an impossible mission,” Dung said.

In order to obtain 6.7 percent growth, agriculture & forestry must obtain 3.05 percent growth, industry & construction 7.91 percent and services 7.19 percent. - The SG Times -

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