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PM tells ministries to propose measures for propping up virus-hit economy

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HCMC – Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has ordered ministries and agencies to map out solutions to prop up Vietnam’s economy hard hit by the coronavirus pandemic and present them at an upcoming web conference between the Government and local authorities.

PM Phuc was speaking at a meeting on April 8 to prepare the ground for the conference, scheduled for April 10, to discuss measures for removing hurdles to business operations, accelerating the disbursement of public investment capital, addressing social security issues and stepping up social order and safety.

Many enterprises have had to temporarily suspend business or shut down. This situation would worsen if the coronavirus pandemic continues to ravage the economy, the Government leader stressed.

PM Phuc tasked ministries and relevant agencies with a crucial political mission on public investment, calling on them to work out effective ways to disburse the remaining capital assigned for 2019 and 2020, at nearly VND700 trillion, equivalent to roughly US$30 billion.

Any agencies or local authorities that are slow in the disbursement will face consequences, he added.

Besides this, he told the Finance Ministry to present urgent measures for the State budget at the conference, especially in terms of taxes, fees and charges, to back enterprises hard hit by Covid-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus.

Given the fall in budget collections, the Finance Ministry needs to adopt measures to ensure an adequate budget for combating the disease and address social security issues.

As for the monetary and financial sector, the head of the Government demanded that the State Bank of Vietnam consider lowering lending rates for both old and new loans, create favorable conditions for companies to access capital and stop forcing businesses to pay debts at a time of hardship.

Meanwhile, the central bank must regulate foreign exchange rates efficiently, control inflation and stabilize the macroeconomy.

As for the Ministry of Industry and Trade, it has to introduce solutions to facilitate export activity, execute the signed free trade agreements, ensure ample supplies of goods with reasonable prices for local consumers and disburse capital for key projects.

The prime minister also asked the Ministry of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs to present suggestions for the effective use of social security packages at the upcoming event.

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