Though 2020 is a challenging year for Vietnam with the rise of COVID-19, the 14th National Assembly (NA) has taken innovative approaches and managed to complete an enormous workload to fulfill all its three missions
in lawmaking, supervision and major decision-making.
National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan delivers the closing remarks at the 41st AIPA General Assembly (AIPA-41) in September.
The NA’s 9th sitting has put a mark on its 70-year history as for the first time, the NA deputies from different locations met virtually for days in May as a measure to deal with the spread of COVID-19.
The lawmakers have used tablets to cast their votes while reports and information have been regularly delivered to them by apps.
Such flexible and active adaption to the new situation has laid a foundation for the NA’s innovation in the era of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
The 9th sitting has received positive feedback from the deputies as all virtual meetings were run smoothly without any difficulty or technical problems.
It reflects the NA’s efforts to innovate and be flexible in its operation while maintaining its spirit of democracy and openness, said NA Vice Chairman Phung Quoc Hien.
Nguyen Hanh Phuc, Secretary-General of the NA and Chairman of the NA’s Office, said it is critical for the NA to promote the application of information technology in its activities. The shift to virtual meetings is fundamental to the NA looking into how the next sittings would be organised, he said.
NA Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan also said the new meeting format once again shows that the NA, in any circumstances, has always worked hard with great responsibility for the benefit of the people and the country.
Following the success of the 9th sitting, the NA continued to organise the 10th sitting via video teleconference in October and November.
One of the highlights of the 10th sitting was the question-and-answer (Q&A) sessions during which the deputies raised question to Government members and others in various areas, particularly the implementation of the NA’s resolutions on specialised supervision in the 14th tenure and several others of the 13th term.
The Q&A sessions covered a wide range of matters of public concerns, such as devastating landslides and flooding in central Vietnam which had taken major human and economic toll in October and November.
This year, the Vietnamese NA works as the Chair of the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA). Because of impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the 41st AIPA General Assembly (AIPA-41) was held online from September 8 – 10 for the first time in the history of the organisation.
Under the leadership of Vietnam, the AIPA-41 arrived at a success and reflected through the full participation and support of member parliaments, observers and international parliamentary organisations. Notably, at the AIPA-41, the AIPA Committee on Political Matters was able to convene a meeting, after none was held in the three previous General Assemblies.
Also during this General Assembly, Vietnam raised initiatives on the organisation of the AIPA Young Parliamentarians’ Meeting and a conference on “Parliamentary Partnership on Educational and Cultural Cooperation for Sustainable Development”, which were supported by all member parliaments.
The AIPA Chairmanship Year 2020 and the AIPA-41 have helped the organisation define a strategic vision for the next 5-10 years, affirming the role of parliamentary diplomacy in the region and the world and contributing to developing the ASEAN Community.
Over the past 25 years, the Vietnamese NA has made important contributions to the AIPA, and the success of the ASEAN Chairmanship Year, as well as the AIPA-41, is another Vietnamese contribution to AIPA’s development, NA Chairwoman Ngan said.
Also this year, the NA has adopted 17 bills and 34 resolutions, including those ratifying the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA), EU-Vietnam Investment Protection Agreement (EVIPA) and International Labour Organisation (ILO) Convention 105 on Abolition of Forced Labour, which lay legal basis for the country’s sustainable growth and international integration./.VNA