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NEW UPDATES Asean Affairs  25 November 2014  

City targets high growth in 2015

Vietnam: The nation's commercial hub will keep its economic growth target for 2015 high at 9.5-10 per cent and initiate several business-friendly measures to achieve it, HCM City People's Committee Chairman Le Hoang Quan said on Saturday.

Addressing the opening session of the 20th meeting of the HCM City Party Committee, he said that his administration will focus on curbing difficulties facing the city's real estate market, supporting production, and attracting investment for developing supporting industries.

Quan said the city targets an eight to 10 per cent increase in export turnover and to raise public spending to 30 per cent of GDP, compared with 28.5 per cent in 2013.

The city will also continue to create favourable and equitable conditions for all economic sectors, mobilise ODA (Official Development Assistance) for development, complete major infrastructure projects, and open up environment protection activities to the private sector, he said.

He informed the meeting that the City is set to achieve a GDP of VND879 trillion (US$41.2 billion) this year, up 9.5 per cent over 2013. Per capita income reached $5,131, compared with $4,520 the previous year.

The municipal administration estimates that in 2014, retail sales and service turnover will post a year-on-year increase of 12.5 per cent, export turnover will rise 8.8 per cent year-on-year to $32 billion, and imports will rise 0.3 per cent over 2013 to $26 billion.

Chairman Quan also said that the city adopted market-diversification as a strategy to minimise negative impacts in some major import and export markets. The city has exported goods to over 200 countries and territories, he noted.

Shortcomings linger

Despite its achievements, the City's economic growth has been relatively sluggish and most its export growth is based on processed goods with low added value, Quan conceded.

Small and medium scale businesses were still facing difficulties, and urban management was posing a daunting challenge. The city still lacks the infrastructure its development demands, resulting in traffic congestion, jams, flooding and several environmental problems.

Quan also admitted that the city has not fulfilled its task of supplying sufficient clean water for its population, its hospitals were overloaded, and its food hygiene and safety management left room for improvement.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More






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