Vietnam’s socio-economic situation in April 2019 witnessed many positive signs with macroeconomic stability and surging aggregate demand, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc told a regular cabinet meeting in Hanoi on May 4.
At the cabinet meeting
PM Phuc noted with pleasure that a large number of new businesses were established while the country made a record in attracting foreign direct investment (FDI) with a lot of large-scale projects. The agriculture sector yielded bumper crops and the epidemic of African swine fever was controlled to minimise damage, he said.
According to the government leader, the country’s exports increased significantly and continuously recorded a trade surplus. Inflation was curbed at a low level although prices of some services and petrol were adjusted upwards and the country’s Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) climbed up, ranking second among ASEAN countries.
Regarding the recent hikes in electricity, oil and petrol prices, the PM explained that the increase of power price was in line with rules of a socialist-oriented market economy and had been deliberated carefully by the Government. However, the calculation of electricity price remains unclear and unconvincing, causing public concern in recent days.
In that context, PM Phuc said he had ordered to conduct inspections on the adjustment of electricity selling prices and the calculation method, and then make them public. The Ministry of Industry and Trade and the Vietnam Electricity (EVN) must have the responsibility to report this issue to the Government and people, he said.
Through the Private Sector Economic Forum 2019, the PM requested ministries, sectors and localities to push ahead with administrative reform and improvement of business environment.
Regarding public investment, the PM said the disbursement remained tardy and asked cabinet members to take stronger measures and strictly handle ministries, sectors, localities and investors involved in the slow disbursement of public investment.
A report delivered by the Ministry of Planning and Investment showed that the consumer price index (CPI) in April 2019 went up 0.31 percent against the previous month. The four-month CPI rose 2.71 percent year-on-year, the lowest level in the past three years.
The industrial production index (IPI) expanded 9.2 percent driven by the high growth of 10.9 percent in the processing and manufacturing industry.
Total retail sales of goods and services recorded a growth rate of 11.9 percent, the highest since 2015.
More than 43,000 new businesses were established in the first four months of 2019 with total registered capital of over 540 trillion VND (23.22 billion USD). Over 17,000 enterprises resumed their operations, up 53.6 percent year on year.
The flow of foreign direct investment (FDI) capital reached 5.7 billion USD, a year-on-year rise of 7.5 percent. The total amount of newly registered and added capital increased 28.6 percent to 7.5 billion USD.
The country grossed 78.76 billion USD from exports, up 5.8 percent, including over 23 billion USD from the domestic economic sector, up 10.5 percent, and enjoyed a trade surplus of 711 million USD.
During the meeting, cabinet members focused discussions on the implementation of the Government’s resolution on implementing the socio-economic development plan and the State budget in 2019 as well as the socio-economic situation in the first four months of this year.
They also prepared contents for the government’s submission to the seventh meeting of the 14th National Assembly, which is scheduled to take place in late May.-VNA