The seventh session of the 14th National Assembly (NA) opened at the NA Hall in Hanoi yesterday in a ceremony broadcast live on national television and radio.
|The opening ceremony of NA's seventh session on Monday in Hà Nội. VNA/VNS Photo|
Addressing the opening ceremony, NA Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan said 2019 is significant in the push to complete the goals set in the socio-economic development plan for 2016-20.
The workload is heavy and requires the political system, Party, citizens and businesses to “turn words into action, turn challenges into opportunities,” she said.
Ngan asked NA deputies to uphold the spirit of innovation and creativity, spend time studying documents and give clear opinions during discussions and controversial debates. The process helps NA deputies build a consensus around difficult issues, which in turn leads them to make better decisions that will be supported by citizens.
The seventh session, which will last until June 14, will spend 60 per cent of the total meeting time (20 working days) making laws. The NA plans to adopt seven laws and two resolutions and give opinions on nine other bills.
The NA will consider a report on the implementation of policies and laws on land planning, management and use in urban areas between when the 2013 Land Law took effect and the end of 2018. It will also look at reports on the implementation of development plans and the State budget in 2018 and the first months of 2019.
Based on the reports, NA deputies will debate the use of loans and management of public debt, as well as the handling of violations of rules on the use of State capital in enterprises and in equitising State-owned enterprises.
The lawmakers make decisions on the addition of new projects to the mid-term public investment plan for 2016-20 and pass resolutions on the establishment of specialised NA supervision teams in 2020.
The NA is scheduled to give two and a half days to question-and-answer sessions.
Delivering a report on the development plan and State budget in 2018 and the first months of 2019, Deputy Prime Minister Truong Hoa Binh highlighted the Government’s target of ensuring the major balances of the economy.
According to his report, gross domestic product growth in the first three months of this year reached 6.79 per cent. Fishery production recorded growth of 5.1 per cent – the highest rate seen in the same period of the previous nine years.
Export turnover in the first four months of 2019 reached US$78.8 billion, an increase of 5.8 per cent, and trade surplus reached $711 million.
Binh pointed out mid- and long-term challenges including slow public investment disbursement, difficulty handling loss-making projects and public property, land and resource management.
The Government has upheld the spirit of “discipline, uprightness, action, creativity, breakthrough and effectiveness” and ordered ministries and sectors to review and complete mechanisms, policies and laws to remove obstacles to investment, trade, taxes, labour, land and resources, according to Binh.
The Government will pay attention to restructuring the national economy and reforming the growth model along with increasing labour productivity, quality, efficiency and competitiveness.
Vu Hong Thanh, chairman of the NA’s Economic Committee in charge of assessing the development report, said the Government needed to cut down on administrative procedures, accelerate disbursement of public investment, deal with “black credit” loans and take measures to control animal epidemics.
The Government needed to continue to review commitments in new-generation free trade agreements and international treaties; and soon adjust investment attraction policies to lure high-quality foreign direct investment inflows, Thanh said.
In the morning session, Tran Thanh Man, President of the Viet Nam Fatherland Front, presented a report on opinions and petitions submitted to NA deputies by voters nationwide.
According to the report, as many as 3,518 opinions and petitions were submitted by voters after the 14th NA's sixth session.
The Government and Government agencies have settled 2,290 out of 2,293 petitions that voters submitted.
Voters and citizens expressed their confidence in the leadership of the Party and the State, particularly in fighting against corruption and wastefulness by imposing punishments on violating officials, both on duty and retired.
However, voters said the corruption asset recovery rate remained low and proposed the Party and Government take more drastic action in cases of corruption that cause huge losses.
Voters also expressed their concern over accidents caused by drink driving, punishments imposed on those who cheated on the national exam last year, large-scale trans-national drug trafficking, food poisoning in schools, child sexual harassment and people paying for sins committed in a past life at Ba Vang Pagoda in northern Quang Ninh Province.
After collecting voters’ opinions, the Viet Nam Fatherland Front proposed the NA and the Government order sectors and localities to accelerate progress on key national projects, develop transportation infrastructure and reduce traffic congestion in big cities and key economic zones.
Other solutions proposed included improving the investment environment and encouraging the development of private businesses and co-operatives to make them a driving force for the economy.
The Viet Nam Fatherland Front also proposed the Government and Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment deal with waste and call on private investment in waste treatment.
First statement on NA’s seventh session
A group discussion at the NA's seventh session
The seventh session of the 14th National Assembly (NA) opened in Hanoi on May 20.
Opening the event, NA Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan said that the session will focus on law building with the adoption of seven laws and two resolutions, along with discussion of nine bills.
NA deputies will give opinions on reports on the socio-economic situation and state budget for 2018 and 2019, while conducting supreme supervision and question-and-answer sessions, she said.
Following the opening ceremony, the deputies listened to a number of reports, including those on evaluating the implementation of socio-economic development and state budget plans for 2018, as well as the first months of 2019; the summary of voters’ opinions sent to the seventh session; and the outcomes of supervision over the settlement of voters’ requests sent to the previous session.
In the afternoon, Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Tuan Anh delivered a proposal on the draft law on amendments and supplements to a number of articles of the Law on Insurance Business and Law on Intellectual Property.
After that, Chairman of the NA Law Committee Nguyen Khac Dinh delivered a verification report on the bill.
Minister of Finance Dinh Tien Dung read a proposal asking the NA to approve the state budget balance for 2017, while State Auditor General Ho Duc Phoc delivered an auditing report on state budget balance for 2017. Chairman of the NA Finance-Budget Committee Nguyen Duc Hai also delivered a report verifying the state budget balance for 2017.
After the plenary session, the deputies discussed in groups the draft law on amendments and supplements to a number of articles of the Law on Insurance Business and the Law on Intellectual Property.
As scheduled, on May 21, the NA will listen to a report on adjustments to the revised Law on Education, while discussing a number of unsettled contents of the law.
In the afternoon, they will listen to a report on amendments to the Law on Architecture and give opinions to some articles of the law.
Deputies discuss adjustments to Law on Insurance Business
The draft Law on amendments and supplementations to a number of articles of the Law on Insurance Business was put into discussion during the 14th National Assembly’s seventh session on May 20.
The bill aims to create momentum for the expansion of the insurance market, while increasing the insurance coverage and strengthening the safety and stability of the market.
The Law on Insurance Business was adopted at the eighth session of the 10th National Assembly and took effect from April 1, 2001.
According to the Insurance Supervisory Authority under the Ministry of Finance, before the introduction of the law, only 15 businesses operated in the insurance sector. However, the figure rose to 64 in 2018, including the subsidiary of a foreign firm.
Total capital of the businesses increased by 29 percent per year on average over the 2000-2018 period, reaching 81.55 trillion VND (3.5 billion USD) in 2018. Total property of the market grew by 28.5 percent during the 2000-2018 period to reach 394.19 trillion VND (16.95 billion USD) in 2018.
In this period, insurance businesses paid over 246.58 trillion VND (10.6 billion USD) in benefits to customers.
The authority reported that so far, the total number of insurance products in the market is nearly 1,300, including more than 450 life insurance products.
Statistics from insurance firms showed that about 80 percent of infrastructure construction and major economic projects by the State have been covered by insurance companies.
Furthermore, the insurance sector had poured 321.16 trillion VND (13.8 billion USD) into the economy by 2018. Insurance firms have invested nearly 89 trillion VND (3.82 billion USD) in government bonds.
Draft education, architecture laws in focus on May 21
The draft revised Law on Education and the draft Law on Architecture are on top of the agenda of the parliament on May 21.
This is part of the ongoing seventh session of the 14th National Assembly (NA) that kicked off in Hanoi on May 20.
In the morning, Chairman of the NA’s Committee for Culture, Education, Youth, Adolescents and Children Phan Thanh Binh will deliver a report on amendments to the draft revised Law on Education.
As it is an important law directly relating to people’s life, the draft has attracted great public attention. It was discussed at the two previous sessions of the parliament in 2018 and at the full-time NA deputies’ meeting last April. The Government has also collected public opinions on this draft.
After listening to the NA committee’s report, legislators will scrutinise some debatable issues of this draft revised law, which consists of 10 chapters with 119 articles.
In the afternoon, deputies will look into the draft Law on Architecture after hearing a report on amendments to this draft delivered by Chairman of the NA’s Committee for Science, Technology and Environment Phan Xuan Dung.
This draft law was brought into consideration at the parliament’s sixth session last year and the 32nd session of the NA Standing Committee in March 2019.
It is comprised of five chapters with 41 articles, up 4 articles from the draft submitted to the NA’s sixth session.-VNA