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|From left to right: Permanent Deputy Prime Minister Truong Hoa Binh, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, and Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh at the working session with the Southern key economic region in Ba Ria-Vung Tau on May 30, 2020. Photo: VGP|
Speaking at the working session with the region in Ba Ria-Vung Tau Saturday, the Government chief challenged the region to complete the vision by 2035, 10 years ahead of the nation.
The 2045 vision, which was announced by PM Phuc at his working session with the Ministry of Planning and Investment in February last year, includes the goal of turning Viet Nam into a prosperous country by 2045 when the country celebrates the 100th anniversary of the National Day.
The region, comprising Ho Chi Minh City, Dong Nai, Binh Duong, Ba Ria-Vung Tau, Binh Phuoc, Tay Ninh, Long An, and Tien Giang, is one of the four key economic regions in Viet Nam.
Its combined GRDP reached VND 2.51 quadrillion(US$107.93 billion) in 2018, accounting for 45.42% of the national GDP. Ho Chi Minh City alone countributed about 49.5% of the region’s GRDP and nearly 30% of the national GDP, according to the Ministry of Planning and Investment.
The region’s per capita income was estimated at US$5,474, or 2.12 times higher than the national average, said the ministry.
At the conference, local leaders suggested the Government focus investments in infrastructure projects, especially expressways and logistics ports to enhance connectivity among the localities.
First of all, the Government should speed up progress of such highway projects like Ben Luc-Long Thanh, Dau Giay-Lien Khuong, Phan Thiet-Dau Giay, they said.
Binh Phuoc Province suggested the Government would soon build an expressway from Ho Chi Minh to Binh Phuoc’s Hoa Lu international border gate and a railway from Di An to the border gate in order to ease pressure on national highways No. 13 and 14.
Meanwhile, Tay Ninh Province asked the Government to establish a regional council, led by a Deputy Prime Minister, to better coordinate development efforts.
|The PM in the meeting (Photo: VGP)|
Mr. Michael Kelly, Senior Executive Chairman and CEO of ACDL - The Investor of The Grand Ho Tram Strip (Ba Ria - Vung Tau) - the US's largest tourism project in Vietnam, said that Vietnam had received worldwide attention about its success in combating the COVID-19, being one of the first countries to reopen its economy. Vietnam now has many opportunities to attract new investment flows. Regarding the plan to expand the scale of investment in Ba Ria - Vung Tau, he proposed to organize a campaign to promote Vietnam as a safe destination.
He and some investors want the Government to continue improving the investment environment and simplify administrative procedures.
According to Mr. Do Thien Anh Tuan, lecturer at Fulbright School of Public Policy and Management, if the economy is like a compressed spring and expected to sprout after the COVID-19 epidemic, the southern key economic region must be the strongest spring when accounting for over 45% of the national GDP.
Recognizing the provinces and cities' recommendations in SKER region, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc affirmed to specifically address each petition, "not just telling but doing it, taking specific direct actions".
Talking about the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic making the world waver, the Prime Minister stated that we had overcome many difficulties and challenges, controlled and prevented the epidemic, leaving no person and families get lost due to the disease. This is an importantly initial victory, an opportunity, and a foundation for faster development. However, the Prime Minister noted that it should not be subjective without vaccine currently and the disease remained complicated in many countries.
|Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, Deputy Prime Ministers and delegates attended the Conference. - Photo: VGP|
Regarding the economy, the Prime Minister expressed his appreciation for the determination of the provinces and cities in the southern KER not to change the State plan's target for 2020. Therefore, "This conference is only forwards, not for reversing". It is very important for the largest KER in the country to contribute to Vietnam's strength and prosperity. In the near future, the region will be a megacenter with the leading scale in Southeast Asia and East Asia. "The near future may take us 10 years, 20 years or 30 years depending on our will, actions and creativity." Ho Chi Minh City and the remaining 7 provinces were said to be the "diamond octagon" for the target of both the area of economic development and a healthy living environment by the Prime Minister. Therefore, the SKER will reach its goal at least 10 years earlier of a strong and prosperous Vietnam, which means becoming a powerful region by 2035.
Therefore, according to the Prime Minister, the whole region must unite and join hands to develop together in a new vision, a will, energy and aspiration of each individual leader, each entrepreneur, each locality, dare to commit, innovate, and take responsibility for the development of the country.
The Prime Minister also assigned agencies to study projects on specific mechanisms for the KER, including the SKER with the budget issue. The Ministry of Planning and Investment shall study an investment support package from the central budget to support localities in a number of important and urgent transport infrastructure works.
The State Bank shall study solutions and proposals to the Government and the Prime Minister for the involvement of credit institutions in PPP projects in the transport sector and a number of other important urgent projects. .
The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment shall immediately study the land use planning to reserve land for suitable industrial parks and urban areas. The Ministry of Planning and Investment shall adjust and supplement industrial park planning to meet the development requirements of localities, regions and countries in order to receive new investment waves.
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