On the morning of June 29th, 2021, the General Statistics Office (GSO) held a press conference to announce the socio-economic statistics of the second quarter and the first six months of 2021. Ms. Nguyen Thi Huong, General Director chaired the press conference. At the press conference, Ms. Nguyen Thi Huong, announced the basic issues about the socio-economic situation of Vietnam in the second quarter and six months of 2021. Accordingly, gross domestic product (GDP) in the second quarter of 2021 was estimated to increase by 6.61% over the same period last year, higher than the growth rate of 0.39% in the second quarter of 2020 but lower than the growth rate of 6.73% of the second quarter of 2018 and 2019. Generally for the first 6 months of 2021, GDP increased by 5.64%, higher than the growth rate of 1.82% in the first 6 months of 2020 but lower than the growth rate of 7.05% and 6.77% of the same period in 2018 and 2019. The Covid-19 pandemic that broke out in a number of localities across the country from the end of April with complicated and unpredictable evolvement has posed many challenges and risks for our country in realizing the dual goal of “both prevention and control pandemic and economic development”. The growth results in the first 6 months of the year show the drastic direction and management of the Government and the Prime Minister; the joint effort and consensus of the political system, the business community, the people of the country and the frontline force against the pandemic to control the pandemic, carry out tasks and solutions for socio-economic development in 2021.

          Some major socio-economic indicators in 6 months of 2021 are as follows:

          – Gross domestic product (GDP): + 5.64%

          – Index of industrial production (IIP): + 9.3%

          – Number of newly established enterprises: 67,081 enterprises

          – Gross retail sales of consumer goods and services: + 4.9%

          – Realized investment capital: + 7.2%

          – Total export turnover of goods: + 28.4%

          – Total import turnover of goods: + 36.1%

          – Trade surplus: 1.47 billion USD

          – International visitors to Vietnam: -97.6%

          – Average consumer price index: + 1.47%

          – Core inflation: + 0.87%

          – Labour force at 15 years of age and above: 51 million people

          – Employed population at 15 years of age and above: 49.9 million people

          – Unemployment rate of labour force at working age: 2.52%

          – Underemployment rate of labour force at working age: 2.58%

In the context of the Covid-19 epidemic, which is still complicated, however, the socio-economic picture of Vietnam in the first 6 months of 2021 continued to remain stable and achieve positive results in many areas due to the timely, drastic, and very close direction and management of the Government, the Prime Minister and the efforts of all levels, branches, localities, the business community and the people. Agencies, both central and local, have performed well and effectively in epidemic prevention and control, establishing a Vaccine Fund for Covid-19 Prevention and Control to receive, manage and use aid sources. Supporting the purchase and self-research, vaccine production, and free vaccinations for people to be determined to achieve the highest possible socio-economic goals in 2021. The economy maintained a growth rate of 5.64%, which was quite a growth rate compared to other countries in the region and the world. The macro-economy was stable, low-level inflation controlled. The supply and demand of domestic goods were guaranteed, and goods procurement, consumption, and export activities increased. The area of agriculture, forestry, and fishery had a relatively high growth rate, confirming that the restructuring of the industry has brought into play effectively, ensuring the supply of food, food, and essential goods. The processing and manufacturing industry continued to play an important role in promoting economic growth in the first six months of 2021. The progress of disbursement of public investment capital has improved markedly, and the growth rate of investment capital realized under the State budget has reached a high level. Labor and employment in the first six months in 2021 were maintained compared to the same period last year, the unemployment rate in working age and the average income of salaried employees remained stable; social security was taken care of.

However, in addition to the achieved results, entering the third quarter, our country’s economy – society still faces many difficulties and challenges. Especially, Vietnam’s economy has a high openness, so it is affected in many ways by the increasingly complex and unpredictable international economic situation. Many countries around the world have implemented Vaccination against the Covid-19, but differences between vaccination rates by countries and regions lead to the risk of uneven and fragile recovery of the world economy, disrupting the global supply chain, affecting the trade, tourism, transportation industries, the increase in unemployment and underemployment will affect social security. Therefore, Vietnam’s economy in the last six months of 2021 will continue to face many difficulties. The effective implementation of “dual goals” is a big challenge, requiring the joint effort and consensus of the Government, businesses, enterprises, and people. In a short time, it is necessary to control well the Covid-19 epidemic, quickly deploy the Covid-19 vaccine, along with research to be proactive in the source of vaccines for the long term. Continue to implement preventive solutions for enterprises that can quickly and effectively access support packages. Speed up the disbursement of public investment capital. At the same time, focus on the following key contents:

Firstly, continue to implement well the “dual-goal”: drastically preventing and controlling Covid-19 effectively, protecting people’s health, together with removing difficulties for the business community and employees, combined with economic institutional reform. Strong, drastic, and effective implementation of the vaccine strategy. Should have mechanisms and policies to encourage research and production of vaccines. Contribution and use of the Vaccine Fund must ensure publicity, transparency, and objectivity. Mobilizing all resources, and supports of the entire people, businesses, organizations, and individuals domestically and abroad. Striving to maximize the percentage of Vietnamese fully vaccinated the Covid-19 vaccine; Particular priority for workers in industrial parks, export processing zones, retail systems of supermarkets/distribution systems to maintain production, business and supply essential goods to serve the needs of consumtion for the people.

Secondly, proactively and promptly deploy support solutions for people and businesses affected by the Covid-19 epidemic, especially workers who have lost their jobs in industrial parks. Continue to focus on removing difficulties for production and business enterprises, recovering the economy, and reforming processes and procedures so that businesses can access simple, convenient and timely support policies. Support the business community in finding markets to import raw materials, fuel, materials, spare parts and spare parts to overcome difficulties caused by the Covid-19 epidemic. At the same time, support and encourage newly established enterprises, start-up enterprises, enterprises to expand investment in production and business, creating a favorable environment for enterprises to develop.

Thirdly, manage monetary, interest rate and exchange rate policies flexibly and cautiously, suitable for domestic and international market developments, harmonious combination with fiscal and other macro policies to control inflation, support production and business and promote economic growth. Control and take timely measures to ensure the supply and price of raw materials, fuel and input materials for domestic production, especially the price of animal feed for cattle, poultry, aquatic products and livestock, construction steel; do not delay and cause difficulties for activities, especially construction and implementation of major and key investment projects in the short term. Having appropriate policies to reduce prices of materials that have increased in price recently, especially iron and steel prices; use appropriate tax policies in favor of importing raw materials and exporting finished products.

Fourthly, strengthen the disbursement of public investment capital; remove obstacles in public investment, construction, compensation, site clearance… Actively approach, study and support partners and large corporations to explore investment opportunities in Vietnam , especially in the fields that need to focus on attracting foreign investment capital; grasp the situation of adjusting appropriate solutions to attract FDI. Focus on training highly skilled workers in the fields that are tending to develop, meeting the requirements of integration and attracting foreign investment.

Fifthly, actively coordinate, support, and guide localities in promoting and connecting agricultural product consumption in the digital environment (in the context of social distancing). Support and urge associations, industries, and businesses to remove difficulties, effectively carry out trade promotion activities, promote products and categories, seek and expand the domestic market to quickly promote the consumption of agricultural products with large outputs that are already in season or about to be harvested in localities. Guide e-commerce trading floors to facilitate sellers and traders of agricultural products to join, train skills and operate online business activities; shipping support; online payment; supporting and prioritizing agribusiness traders to participate in Online Shopping Day Programs; national online store…; mobilizing people to give priority to using domestic products, supporting enterprises to produce and consume products.

Sixthly, closely monitor the weather situation, proactively plan for disaster prevention, warn of rain, floods, landslides, impacts of drought, and saltwater intrusion to minimize damage to production and people’s lives. Effectively implement policies on social security, labor, and employment. Implement well the work of unexpected assistance, ensuring that people in danger or disaster receive timely support, overcome difficulties, and stabilize their lives. Strengthen ensuring traffic order and safety, environmental protection, fire and explosion prevention./.