Viet Nam needs post-pandemic programme to boost economic recovery: expert

Friday, Feb 26, 2021 07:40

An IT staff introduce their products to a customer. — Photo

To achieve important targets in 2021-2025, Viet Nam should consider economic digitalisation key to shifting its growth model and carry out a “post-COVID-19” mid-term programme in association with economic restructuring on the basis of taking advantage of opportunities brought about by free trade agreements (FTAs), an expert has said.

The advice came from Dr Tran Du Lich, a member of the Prime Minister’s Economic Advisory Group, in an interview with Cong Thuong (Industry and Trade) newspaper.

He said Viet Nam’s growth of 2.91 per cent last year was a miracle amid the serious impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and natural disasters.

However, entering 2021 - the first year of implementing the new Socio-Economic Development Strategy - Viet Nam will face several major mid-term challenges. Firstly, he said, the economic achievements gained in 2016-2019 are being eroded, as reflected through the significant decline in 2020 GDP growth, while public debt and bad debts are increasing once more and the unpredictable developments of the pandemic have slowed economic restructuring.

Secondly, the readiness of Vietnamese enterprises to bring into full play the opportunities presented by bilateral and multilateral FTAs, particularly the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), the EU- Viet Nam FTA, and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, remains weak. Most firms, even those with foreign investment, are using outdated production technologies.

Thirdly, efforts to reform economic institutions have brought about certain results but not in a systematic manner, Lich said.

The next five years will be an unpredictable period in politics, economics, and international trade, he said.

Top priority should be given to economic digitalisation during the shifting of the growth model in a sustainable manner during 2021-25.

It is necessary to turn the Government’s determination and innovation during a period of “fighting the disease like fighting the enemy” into determination and innovation in the “post-pandemic” period with specific policies.

Despite the challenges, Viet Nam’s economy will have many opportunities to reach socio-economic targets in 2021-25, he added. — VNS

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