(MPI) - In the framework of the Vietnam Reform and Development Forum (VRDF) 2019’s agenda, in the afternoon of September 19, 2019, a plenary session with the theme of Acting for a prosperous Vietnam was held under the co-chairmanship of Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc. Minister of Planning and Investment Nguyen Chi Dung and Country Director of the World Bank (WB) in Vietnam Ousmane Dione.
Vietnamese startups will be able tocall for investment in their home countries
Attending this momentous event were representatives from agencies of the Party, the National Assembly and the Government, leading experts and scholars from around the world, representatives of Government agencies of several countries in the region and a number of other countries in the world who have experience related to the topic chosen, development partners of Vietnam, enterprises, domestic and foreign corporations, etc.
Speaking at the Forum, Minister Nguyen Chi Dung summarized the results of sessions 1 and 2 that took place in the morning with the theme “Heading towards modern and integrated market economy institutions” and “Innovating to overcome the middle-income trap”. At the same time, he informed that there were 10 presentations from leading experts and two general discussion sections with valuable comments and exchanges.
At the first session on “Heading towards modern and integrated market economy institutions”, the speakers agreed that building and perfecting the market economy institution is particularly essential for the socio-economic development of Vietnam at present as well as in the coming period.
The speeches, comments, exchanges all made clear that the great achievements in socio-economic development in Vietnam are associated with the improvement of socialist-oriented market economy institutions. In particular, the development institutions relating to business investment, business development, support for small and medium-sized enterprises, etc. were especially emphasized, they have created favorable conditions for domestic and foreign enterprises to invest, do business. Vietnam's business environment is ranked in a rather high position. Vietnam has also received a lot of foreign investment as compared to other countries in the region.
Vietnam has formed various types of markets, in which markets for goods and services are the most developed, basically are operating smoothly and coherent with regional and international markets. The role of the Government is adjusted in the context of a market economy, the effectiveness, efficiency of the state management is improved, the management method is renewed, thereby reducing costs for enterprises. An important judgment of many speakers is that in comparison with international practice and the requirements of development, the market economy institutions in Vietnam have many shortcomings, leading to a constraint on development.
In Session 2 with the theme of “Innovating to overcome the middle-income trap”, the speakers shared a lot of valuable experiences, notably, the experience of Indonesia and Korea are useful examples for Vietnam’s reference. The speakers also analyzed, clarified and believed that promoting start-up, innovation and creativity always require venture capital flows. Vietnam has been implementing many solutions to promote start-up, innovation and has achieved positive results. It also has been promoting the application of artificial intelligence in industries of production, agriculture, services, training new labor force, academic cooperation, etc.
To develop the field of artificial intelligence, Vietnam still has some points to improve, including a small number of highly qualified engineers, limited data infrastructure and quality, lack of motivation for enterprises to invest in artificial intelligence to automate because labor costs in Vietnam are low.
In particular, the speakers also said that the field of artificial intelligence has an enormous development space in Vietnam and needs to be boosted more strongly in the coming time. To promote start-up, innovation, and development of artificial intelligence in Vietnam, the speakers also proposed and recommended many solutions for Vietnam in the coming period.
The speakers also recommended direct investment from the Government to stimulate growth in quantity and quality for Startup. The government also needs to build a firm venture capital market in the country, Vietnamese startups will be able to call for investment in their homeland and Vietnam will retain all the million-dollar startups in the future. Law on Venture Capital and Pilot Implementation of Primer Capital Investment into domestic venture capital funds should be considered and promulgated to call for investment flows from abroad into Vietnam's technology startups.
International experience and implications for Vietnam in moving up the global value chain to increase productivity
At the plenary session, Chief Economist of the WB, Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg presented a presentation on international experience and implications for Vietnam in moving up the global value chain to increase productivity.
According to Pinelopi Koujianou Goldberg, a value chain includes all stages and steps in business to bring products and services from the chain to the warehouse and users. Countries can participate in global value chains in a variety of ways. To transfer to advanced industrial production and services in the global value chain, the level of trade openness of the economy and the skills of workers is a decisive factor. Also, profound participation in trade agreements will increase global value chains.
Malaysian Deputy Minister of Primary Industries K.Yogeeswaran shared his experience of overcoming the middle-income trap with Vietnam.At the same time, he said that to become a high-income country, Malaysia determined that it must enhance human capital;shift to complex, high value industries in agriculture and services for manufacturing and processing;resolve income disparities and regional imbalances for comprehensive development; enhance environmental sustainability through green growth development; reform the institution and governance; enhance productivity at all three levels of intervention: national, sectoral, entrepreneurial and innovate towards prosperity.
Mr. K.Yogeesvaran emphasized that for long-term sustainable growth, it is necessary to grow based on productivity and innovation;Innovation should be oriented to create value and economic benefits;institutional and governance reforms are needed to create a supportive ecosystem and ensure that FDI will bring maximum benefits to the domestic economy.Along with that, it is necessary to reform the state-owned enterprise sector and enhance the development of the small and medium-sized enterprise sector.
A non-stop dreaming Vietnam
Speaking at the Forum, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc appreciated the Ministry of Planning and Investment's cooperation with the World Bank, Australian Agency for International Development (AusAid) and Vietnam’s development partners to organize the Second Annual Forum on Vietnam Reform and Development with the theme: Vietnam: Aspiration for Prosperity - Priority and Action.
Sharing about "A non-stop dreaming Vietnam", the Prime Minister said that though the dream, the aspiration to look forward is very beautiful, the reality is what we are forced to face, forced to overcome. With an attitude of looking straight at the limitations and weaknesses, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc agreed, highly appreciated many valid judgments of international experts on the shortcomings, limitations and potential risks; Vietnam's resistance and adaptation to external impacts are still weak; the ability to access to the digital economy is still limited. Recently, the GDP growth rate has tended to slow down, the risk of falling into the middle-income trap and falling behind is still high. In 2018, Vietnam's population ranked 3rd in ASEAN, but the economic scale was at 6th ... The aforementioned requires Vietnam to have a firm stuff, promote the past achievements and experiences to confidently continue implementing 3 strategic breakthroughs on institutional improvement, infrastructure development and human resource promotion with forceful views and actions; continue to realize the aspiration to build a powerful and prosperous Vietnam, striving by 2030 to complete the goals of industrialization and modernization and basically become an industrialized country towards modernization; belong to the top 3 leading countries in ASEAN in terms of industry, in which some industries are internationally competitive and profoundly involved in global value chains. With a vision to 2045, Vietnam will become a modern industrialized country.
Gradually turn Vietnam's aspiration for prosperity into reality
Receiving the direction of the Prime Minister, Minister Nguyen Chi Dung thanked the Prime Minister's very comprehensive and profound guidance on the tasks to be performed in the coming time to gradually turn Vietnam's aspiration for prosperity into reality through appropriate development and reformation priorities and actions in the country's new development period.
“Through the profound analysis of the Prime Minister, we are more aware of the great socio-economic development achievements achieved by the country in the recent strategic period, as well as the difficulties and challenges both subjective and objective that Vietnam has to face in the coming period. Specifically, the economy still has some shortcomings, limitations and many potential risks; the resistance and adaptation to external impacts are still weak; the ability to access to the digital economy is still limited. The GDP growth rate has tended to slow down, the risk of falling into the middle-income trap and falling behind of the economy is still high”, Minister Nguyen Chi Dung emphasized.
Minister Nguyen Chi Dung said that in the coming time, Vietnam needs to identify development priorities and need more drastic and stronger actions, continuing to enhance and improve the quality of the socialist-oriented market economy institution in Vietnam; completing the transition to a modern and integrated market economy in accordance with the international practices. At the same time, it is necessary to thoroughly overcome the limitations and shortcomings to strongly develop science and technology and promote innovation as a basis to improve productivity, quality, efficiency and competitiveness of industries, fields and the whole economy.
The issues of institution reform and innovation promotion are the principal tasks that have been cared about and closely guided by the Party, the State, the Government of Vietnam and the Prime Minister personally. The Prime Minister has repeatedly instructed ministries, branches, localities in general and the Ministry of Planning and Investment in particular to take drastic actions to complete the transition to a modern and integrated market economy in accordance with the international practices; ensure full freedom, safety in business activities; mobilize, allocate and effectively use resources according to market principles; formulate, perfect and test the legal framework for new types of business and the digital economy; vigorously develop science, technology, and innovation, take enterprises as the center; perform the digital transformation in national governance, production, business, etc.
Implementing institutional reforms, promoting innovation and perfecting the national innovation ecosystem, recently, the Ministry of Planning and Investment has coordinated with relevant ministries, branches and localities to complete and submit to the Prime Minister the project "Orientations to perfect institutions and policies, improve the quality, usage and efficiency of foreign investment attraction until 2030", commonly referred to as the New Generation of FDI Attraction Strategy. The Ministry of Planning and Investment has also urgently finalized the National Strategy on the Fourth Industrial Revolution and submitted it to the Prime Minister for approval. The aforementioned is a strategic task, outlining the framework for industries, fields, and localities to have a solid base, to utilize the opportunities brought by the Industrial Revolution 4.0.
Minister Nguyen Chi Dung said that the Ministry of Planning and Investment will synthesize valuable comments and proposals of international and domestic speakers at the Forum to report to the Prime Minister, at the same time, make recommendations to the Prime Minister on the next steps to be taken to effectively use the international experience, knowledge, the suitable suggestions and proposals received from the Forum today as important inputs for the study, formulating of the 10-year Socio-Economic Development Strategy 2021-2030, main orientations and tasks of the 5-year Socio-Economic Development Plan 2021-2025 as well as the Medium-term Public-Private Investment Plan for 2021 - 2025.
As the head of the Ministry of Planning and Investment which has the role of providing general advices and always strives to take the lead in the country's reform, innovation and development, Minister Nguyen Chi Dung affirmed that the Ministry will work together with relevant ministries and agencies to promote the achieved results and always make the best effort to effectively implement the tasks that the Prime Minister has directed at the VRDF 2019.
At the Plenary Session, representatives focused on discussing global value chains to achieve higher productivity: International experience and implications for Vietnam; Experience escaping middle-income trap through innovation and recommendations for Vietnam; Elevating Vietnam to a new level of development: Learning from international knowledge; Orienting development for Vietnam to become a prosperous country by 2030 and a vision to 2045; etc. ./.