Vietnam Business Forum offers solutions for firms in post-COVID-19 landscape


VOV.VN - The Vietnam Business Forum (VBF) themed "Challenges and Opportunities in the new normal" 2020 kicked off on December 22 in Hanoi with proposals being put forward regarding various solutions and initiatives for local businesses to recover and develop faster in the period following the (COVID-19) pandemic.


In his opening  speech,  Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh  highlighted the position and importance of the annual VBF as an ongoing policy dialogue between the Government and the domestic and foreign business communities. It shows Vietnam’s commitment to improving the legal system and offering  favourable business conditions to facilitate the development of private enterprises and contribute to the country’s sustainable economic growth.

With great determination, the Vietnamese Government has stepped up greater efforts to maintain its economic achievements and fulfil this year’s dual goals of bringing the coronavirus under control and sustaining positive GDP growth, which is projected by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to reach 2.4%, he said.

Meanwhile, Minister of Planning and Investment Nguyen Chi Dung emphasized that 2020 marks the final year in the socio-economic development plan for the 2016 to 2020 period, with the country overcoming plenty of challenges to obtain major achievements across multiple fields and achieving a high growth rate of 6.8% per year.

Minister Dung explained that the nation’s six fundamental achievements over the past year include success in containing the COVID-19 pandemic, stable macroeconomic growth, whilst inflation has been curbed at a low level,.

Furthermore, the infrastructure system has been improved with major large-scale projects being completed during the 2016 to 2019 period, while economic restructuring has been implemented along with a shift of the growth model.

Moreover, the country has made radical administrative reforms, with the domestic business environment being greatly improved along side strengthened external affairs activities and international integration.

Minister Dung therefore attributed these achievements to great contributions made by the local business community, in addition to both domestic and foreign investors who have offered a fresh impetus to major management decisions made by the Vietnamese government to meet the set goals in an effective manner.

With regard to the socio-economic development strategy ahead for the 2021 to 2030 period, he stated that the country aims to focus on fighting the COVID-19 pandemic whilst boosting economic recovery and  development. This will be done whilst accelerating the digital transformation in an effort to build a digital society and develop high-quality human resources in association with the development of science, technology, and innovation.

Moving forward, the nation is anticipated to simplify administrative procedures, create a favourable investment environment, further promote external relations as well as international integration.

Vu Tien Loc, chairman of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), said that the business community expects that the Government will take a range of concrete measures aimed at immediately removing bottlenecks faced by businesses. This will be done in order to maximise opportunities from various free trade agreement (FTAs), specifically the EU-Vietnam FTA (EVFTA), as a means of recovering from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic

In terms of enhancing the competitiveness of local products, the business community hopes that the Government can assist firms in promoting various trade promotion activities. In addition, technical centres for groups of major agricultural export products can be established to meet technical standards in food hygiene and safety, Loc noted.

The VCCI leader proposed that the Government continues to improve the business environment, enhance national competitiveness, reduce costs for enterprises, and carry out an array of effective support schemes, with a specific focus on micro, and small and medium-sized enterprises.