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NEWS UPDATES 5 August 2010

Vietnam targets speculation, price rises

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Preventing price speculation and price increases rises in the cost of essential goods are among the Vietnamese government's major tasks for the remainder of the year, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung recently said.

The Prime Minister also asked ministries, economic sectors and localities to find ways to reduce interest rates and stabilise foreign exchange rates within an acceptable range while balancing the supply and demand for foreign currencies.

The overall picture of the country's socio-economic development in July and the other six months of the year had been positive, the minister said. All the objectives for stabilising the macro economy and controlling inflation had been achieved.

About VND77.6 trillion (US$4 billion) from the State budget had been allocated for development projects, or 62 per cent of the 2010 plan, as of July 31.

In all 533 projects had been licensed with total registered capital of more than $8.4 billion and more than $1.6 million of official development assistance (ODA) had been disbursed. Export revenue to July 31 stood at $38.3 billion, an increase of 17.5 per cent against the first seven months of last year.

The trade deficit was reported at $7.4 billion – equal to 19.5 per cent of export revenue. "We can say that the inflation rate was under the control," he said.

But the minister warned that although the economy had shown positive signs, Viet Nam still faced difficulties and challenges, including the trade deficit and the pressure the high cost for imported raw materials put on the CPI.

And he emphasised that a shortage of credit and high interest rates posed the greatest challenge to enterprises.

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