PM urges strong economic recovery, normalisation of COVID-19

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Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính (standing) chairing the Government meeting in Hà Nội on Thursday. VNA/VNS Photo Dương Giang

HÀ NỘI — Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính has praised the country’s economic growth since the beginning of the year and set out plans for the normalisation of COVID-19.

The Government leader chaired a cabinet meeting on Thursday to review socio-economic development in the first two months of the year, the COVID-19 prevention programme for the 2022-23 period, preparations for the 31st SEA Games, and other prominent domestic and international affairs, including the situation in Ukraine.

Reports on these issues were presented and discussed by officials at the meeting.

Economic experts said the country has seen positive signs of economic recovery; this year’s economic growth forecast is 7.9 per cent, according to Flitch Ratings.

Leaders of the Ministry of Health said the percentage of deaths from COVID-19 decreased from 2.45 to 1.54 since Decree 128 was issued in October last year, which regulates a safe and flexible adaptation to the disease.

However, they also pointed out several tasks the country need to fulfil over the next few months, especially as March will be the last month of the first quarter, with many goals in terms of production and healthcare to be met.

Speaking about these goals, PM Chính recognised the economic highlights the country has achieved, but also asked sector leaders to prepare for months of “more difficulties and challenges than advantages and opportunities.”

He asked leaders of sectors and ministries to keep track of the global and international affairs related to their fields of authority and take actions accordingly if needed.

He asked the health ministry to keep up the pandemic prevention work, assess the status of antibodies against COVID-19 nationwide, and learn from international experience to prepare to “normalise COVID-19 and consider it an endemic disease”.

He assigned Deputy Prime Minister Vũ Đức Đam to complete a draft pandemic prevention programme to be soon promulgated and made public.

The Government leader formed a special working group related to the situation in Ukraine and appointed Standing Deputy Prime Minister Phạm Bình Minh head of the group.

He also assigned Deputy Prime Minister Lê Văn Thành to direct and solve issues related to tax and fee policies, which will help to reduce costs and increase domestic petroleum production.

He asked concerned authorities to speed up public investment disbursement, especially for traffic infrastructure development projects.

“Ministries, sectors and localities that do not complete their capital distribution plans in March will have their capital adjusted and officials reviewed,” he said.

They must also complete plans for economic recovery and growth during this month in accordance with their levels of authority, the PM added.

He stressed the need for strong determination, efforts and actions to end the first quarter on a high note, creating motivation for the whole year, which is expected to be the year the country wins the fight against COVID-19 and achieves quick and sustainable growth. VNS

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