Coronavirus offers a chance to strengthen economic self-reliance

Monday, 2020-05-18 16:07:57
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Strengthening economic self-reliance is one of the foremost solutions for sustainable development. (Photo: VNA)
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NDO - At a conference with businesses on May 9, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc affirmed that now is the time for the coronavirus-hit economy to spring back after the period of social distancing to curb the outbreak.

The government has determined that boosting private investment, attracting foreign investment, increasing exports, accelerating public investment disbursement and promoting domestic demand are the five key solutions to revive the economy.

After nearly a month of implementing social distancing measures to contain the coronavirus, the government decided to begin lifting restrictions from April 23 so as to gradually restore socio-economic activities with the double goal of keeping the disease in check while maintaining economic growth and social security.

The reality in the past few months has underlined the urgent need for each country to strengthen its capacity in economic self-reliance, including Vietnam. As the world is becoming more economically open and deeply integrated, economic self-reliance in the time of a new normal does not mean returning to self-sufficiency and freezing international trade relations, but rather increasing an economy’s resilience to sharp falls in both supply and demand, breaks in supply chains, the plunge in domestic and international economic relations, and stricter standards concerning epidemic prevention.

In that spirit, enterprises needs to proactively adjust their production and business plans; realign supply chains by diversifying their partners and increasing their focus on the domestic market; and promote digital transformation, e-commerce, remote working applications and non-cash payment.

The functional authorities and local governments, for their part, need to step up the fight against bureaucracy and corruption, intensify administrative procedure reform and improve the business environment so as to reduce costs for enterprises such that the private sector and the domestic market are truly the main engines of post-coronavirus economic growth.

At the same time, it is also necessary to quickly formulate and implement a national investment and trade promotion campaign to confirm Vietnam as a safe destination, ready to welcome new flows of foreign investment, and campaign for the relocation of production stages with higher added value to Vietnam from foreign investors who are financially and technologically capable, as well as compliant with Vietnamese laws.

Furthermore, measures are needed to boost domestic demand, accelerate public investment projects, increase proactivity in securing materials, and enhance the innovation and administration capacity of enterprises.

The coronavirus is exposing the weaknesses of the economy but is also an opportunity for Vietnam to identify and overcome them. As such, strengthening economic self-reliance is one of the foremost solutions for sustainable development as non-traditional security challenges and the risks of diseases and natural disasters can become impediments that affect economic growth targets in the long term and upend people’s lives.