06:00 | 07/04/2020 Events
(VEN) - Vietnam was one of the first countries outside China to realize the looming threat of Covid-19 and to take measures to limit its spread, with the low number of reported infection cases reflecting the success of its policies. Now, along with mobilizing resources to curb the pandemic, the government is also looking ahead to economic recovery.
Implementing strong measures
At the end of January, while Vietnam and its neighbors were celebrating the Lunar New Year holiday, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc was already declaring war on the emerging plague. “Fighting the epidemic is fighting the enemy,” he told his government ministers.
PM Phuc issued Instruction 15/CT-TTg, requesting the drastic implementation of strong measures to prevent and control Covid-19 amidst the spread of the pandemic. He ordered the suspension of all meetings and events with more than 20 people, while strictly restricting religious rituals and all cultural, sports and recreational activities in public places. He also ordered a ban on gatherings of more than 10 people outside of offices, schools and hospitals, while requiring all residents to maintain a minimum distance of two meters from each other in public places. He demanded a suspension of non-essential services, except for those selling food and essential goods, as well as limiting travel, especially from provinces and cities hit by the pandemic to other localities.
PM Phuc also urged people to skip gatherings, stay indoors and only go out for essentials, wash hands frequently and wear masks in public places.
Preparing economic stimulus
In addition to mobilizing all resources to prevent and control Covid-19, the government has paid special attention to economic recovery solutions. On March 27, PM Phuc presided over a meeting in Hanoi to prepare for a teleconference between the government and localities on March 31 in order to discuss four main issues: Overcoming difficulties for trade and production activities, accelerating public investment disbursement, ensuring social welfare in the face of widespread unpaid leave and unemployment, and securing social order and safety in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Vietnam will need to prepare to get the economy up and running as soon as the Covid-19 outbreak draws to a close, PM Phuc said.
PM Phuc stated clear orientations on fiscal, monetary and social security policies. Accordingly, he asked the Ministry of Finance to continue reviewing support packages and report to the National Assembly Standing Committee on reducing corporate income tax and other taxes, increasing resources for the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, and cutting unnecessary regular expenditures.
He also urged measures to reduce interest rates and provide interest-free loans for businesses to pay workers. For consumer credit, PM Phuc agreed with the proposal of the Ministry of Industry and Trade and assigned the Ministry of Industry and Trade in coordination with the State Bank of Vietnam to study specific mechanisms in order to seek strong stimulus solutions.
|While calling the people to be calm and place their trust in the government’s pandemic prevention and control measures, PM Phuc urged every citizen to become a “soldier” to prevent and repel the disease.|