Thursday, October 20, 2016

14th NA’s second meeting focuses on economic affairs on day 1

The 14th National Assembly convened its second meeting in Hanoi on October 20 and dedicated the first day to the country’s economic affairs presented by Government members.

In the morning session, deputies listened to a report on the outcomes of the implementation of the socio-economic development plan in 2016 and the plan on the same issues for 2017 delivered by Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, and a report examining these issues presented by Chairman of the NA’s Economic Committee Vu Hong Nam. 

President of the Vietnam Fatherland Front Central Committee Nguyen Thien Nhan presented a summary of opinions and proposals made by voters and people nationwide.

In the afternoon session, deputies heard a report on restructuring the national economy in 2016-2020 presented by Minister of Planning and Investment Nguyen Chi Dung and a report scrutinising the report by Chairman of the NA’s Economic Committee Vu Hong Nam. 

Minister of Finance Dinh Tien Dung presented a five-year finance plan and a report on the outcomes of the implementation of the State budget in 2016 and State budget estimates and allocations in 2017; while Minister of Planning and Investment Nguyen Chi Dung presented a report on mid-term public investment plan for 2016-2020. 

The reports were examined by Chairman of the NA’s Committee for Finance and Budget Affairs Nguyen Duc Hai. 

On October 21, the deputies will have a plenary working session in the morning, focusing on examining the Law on supplements and amendments to some articles of the Penal Code No. 100/2015/QH13; the draft resolution on revising and supplementing some articles of Resolution No. 55/2010/QH12 on exempting and reducing agricultural land rent. These issues will be discussed in depth in groups in the afternoon session.

Top legislator calls for breakthrough measures to achieve set targets

National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan said high resolve and drastic and breakthrough measures are needed to achieve socio-economic development targets and create a momentum for following years in the context of numerous difficulties and challenges facing the country.  
In her speech opening the second session of the 14th National Assembly, the top legislator stressed that the session convenes at a time when the central region has just been devastated by floods. 
“The NA sympathises with the losses suffered by people in the central region and appreciates the strong leadership of the Government as well as the efforts of Party organisations, administrations, armed forces and communities in affected localities in responding to the natural disaster,” Chairwoman Ngan said. 
She called on the entire nation, including overseas Vietnamese, to continue offering support both material and spiritual to flood victims. 
Ngan noted that 2016 is the first year the nation implements the Resolution of the 12th National Party Congress. With high resolve, the entire political system and the people as well as the business community have achieved important outcomes in carrying out the year’s socio-economic development plan, the five-year development plan for 2016-2020. 
The Chairwoman said the national economy recorded a fair growth rate, which is lower than the set target but higher than the rates seen in the region and the world. The macro-economy remains stable while inflation is under control; social security and major balances of the economy are basically ensured. Positive results were made in external relation policy, helping enhance the country’s prestige and status in the international arena. National defence and security has been maintained. 
At the same time, Ngan pointed to a range of difficulties both inside and outside the country. Since early this year, prolonged droughts affected south central and Central Highlands provinces; the Mekong Delta suffered from droughts and salt water intrusion; while a serious environmental incident and floods happened in several central regions, all of which made serious impacts on agricultural production and local people’s life. At the same time, the world economy saw a slow recovery with many unpredictable risks; the prices of crude oil dropped strongly and remained at lower-than-expected levels, thus affecting budget revenue and macro-economic balances. 
“In such context, we need to have high resolve and take drastic and breakthrough measures to restructure the national economy, shift the growth model, control public debt, settle bad debt, restructure the State budget as well as the banking system, improve the business and investment environment towards the goal of stabilising macro-economy, sustaining a reasonable growth rate, ensuring social security, maintaining political stability, strengthening national defence and security, protecting social order and safety, thus creating momentum for development in the years to come,” Ngan said. 
The NA leader underlined the key issues to be considered at the second NA session. 
First of all, the NA will approve several laws and a resolution, and give opinions on 12 other bills, including important laws regulating fields of great public interest. 
Several reports will be submitted to the NA during the session, which assess the implementation of socio-economic development plan and State budget in 2016; socio-economic development plan and the State budget estimates and allocation plan for 2017; the economic restructuring plan for 2016-2020; the five-year financial plan; the mid-term public investment plan for 2016-2020; and the goals and orientations for mobilizing loans and public debt management in 2016-2020. 
The session is also expected to scrutinize reports on the performance of the Chief Judge of the Supreme People’s Court and the Prosecutor General of the Supreme People’s Procuracy; along with the Government’s reports on the fight against crimes and corruption, among others. 
The NA will assess the implementation of the national target programme on building new-style rural areas in 2010-2015 in combination with agricultural restructuring. A resolution on the outcomes of this national target programme is expected to be tabled for discussion and approval. 
The Vietnam Fatherland Front’s Central Committee will submit a report summing up opinions and recommendations of voters and people. The NA Standing Committee is to report to the NA the outcomes of its supervision of the settlement of voters’ petitions sent to the 11th session of the 13th legislature. 
Hearings will also be an important part on the working agenda of the NA’s second session. 
During the opening ceremony, Party and State leaders and NA deputies each donated at least one day’s wage to help flood victims in the central region.
Nearly 3,000 opinions sent to National Assembly by voters nationwide

President of the Vietnam Fatherland Front Central Committee Nguyen Thien Nhan

Voters and people nationwide sent 2,986 opinions and petitions to the National Assembly (NA), President of the Vietnam Fatherland Front (VFF) Central Committee Nguyen Thien Nhan said at the second session of the 14th NA on October 20 morning. 
He presented the VFF’s report summing up the voters and people’s opinions, which affirmed that most voters and people expressed their trust in the Party’s leadership and State’s management, which can be seen in the implementation of the Resolution of the 12th National Party Congress and the NA’s resolution on the socio-economic development plan for 2016-2020. 
They also applauded solutions for socio-economic development, macro-economic stabilisation, administrative reform, investment and business climate improvement, and start-up support. They said the State has worked hard to tackle difficulties in agriculture, boost new-style rural area building, carry out social welfare policies, and safeguard political security, social order and safety, and national sovereignty. 
People also voiced their support for the State’s continued international integration efforts and active contribution to peace and development in the region and the world, the report said. 
The VFF asked the NA, Government and local administrations to seriously consider the opinions. The VFF Central Committee’s presidium also submitted five proposals to the NA session. 
The VFF urged the NA to press on with reforms to improve the quality of lawmaking work along with the quality of policies and legal documents. It should strengthening supervision over pressing issues of public concern.
The Government needs to accelerate administrative reforms and consider people and businesses’ satisfaction as the measurement of reform quality and effectiveness. 
The VFF requested enhancing the quality and effectiveness of the fight against and prevention of corruption through the entire political system’s enforcement of the resolution of the 12th Party Central Committee’s fourth meeting. 
The Government needs to expeditiously review the planning of coal-fired power centres and examine the implementation of the planning as well as the operation of such centres across the country. The review and examination must involve the VFF and the Vietnam Union of Science and Technology Associations, with results to be reported to the NA in 2017. 
The VFF also asked authorities of Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City to soon review all transport and anti-flood related plans, forecast the traffic congestion and flooding situation from now to 2021 and 2025, and devise countermeasures. 
The VFF also wants the Government and provincial and municipal People’s Committees to coordinate with and provide favourable conditions for the Front to continue its ongoing supervisory programmes.
In 2017, the VFF will supervise the implementation of Resolution 29-NQ/TW of the 11th Party Central Committee’s 8th plenum on fundamental and comprehensive reforms of education and training, Nhan added.
NA’s second session: more direct debate, dialogue

NA Secretary General Nguyen Hanh Phuc. 

The National Assembly will continue to renew its working style at the second session in the direction of allowing more dialogue and direct debate, according to NA Secretary General Nguyen Hanh Phuc. 
While the NA’s year-end sessions tend to focus on socio-economic matters, this session, which opened on October 20, will devote more than 60 percent of its working time to law making. During the session, the NA is hoped to pass four bills on associations; belief and religion; property auction; and revisions to a number of articles of the 2015 Criminal Code, along with a resolution on amending a number of articles of Resolution 55/20210/QH12 on exempting and reducing agricultural land use tax. 
The NA will debate for the first time 12 other draft laws and one resolution, some of which have just been included in the working agenda at the last minutes in order to support enterprises and timely address difficulties for business and production activities. 
The NA Secretary General stressed a new point that the law making process at the session will follow regulations of the 2015 Law on Promulgation of Legal Documents to ensure the quality of draft laws submitted to the legislature. 
Also to ensure quality of laws, full-time NA deputies will meet to discuss bills and specialists will be invited to contribute opinions during the process of bill verification while specialists, he said, adding that contentious draft laws will be given more discussion time during NA debate. 
Apart from law making work, the NA will discuss and make decision on a number of important socio-economic issues, including the State budget estimates and allocation plan for 2017; the economic restructuring plan for 2016-2020; the five-year financial plan; the mid-term public investment plan for 2016-2020; and the goals and orientations for mobilizing loans and public debt management in 2016-2020. 
Other issues on the working agenda are anti-crime and anti-corruption work and the settlement of consequences of environmental incidents along with lessons for environmental protection. 
Phuc underlined that the NA will pay attention to enhancing transparency and democracy of its activities while promoting direct dialogue and debate among deputies and between NA deputies and Government members, in order to clarify matters of concern right at the NA discussion. 
He added that Government members will be required to give immediate explanations on problems raised by NA deputies. In addition, deputies can put up signs to voice their response even when others are speaking, instead of having to wait for their turn as in the past. 
The NA’s second session is scheduled to last 26 working days and close on November 23. - VNA


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