Vietnam to miss long-term GDP target over pandemic

By Minh Son   October 20, 2020 | 02:30 am PT
Vietnam to miss long-term GDP target over pandemic
A farmer harvests lychee in the northern province of Bac Giang in June 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Giang Huy.
Vietnam's annual GDP growth forecast of 5.9 percent for 2016-2020 against the targeted 6.5-7 percent showcases Covid-19’s impact on key sectors.

The expected growth this year is 2-3 percent against the target of 6.8 percent, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said at a National Assembly meeting Tuesday.

This also means per capita GDP will most likely miss the target of $3,200-3,500 this year. It is forecast at $2,750 in 2020.

However, the PM told the parliament that the government expects to meet six of nine major economic targets set for the 2016-2020 period.

These include budget overspending, which is set to fall below the 4 percent cap at 3.79 percent; and annual labor productivity growth, which is set to exceed the 5 percent goal at 5.8 percent.

The urbanization rate is pegged at 39.3 percent this year, fulfilling the target of 38-40 percent.

"This year, despite major impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic, we have succeeded in preventing and containing the outbreak and the economy is recovering," Phuc said.

He added that the government will strive to keep the Covid-19 situation under control while reviving the economy.

Vietnam now targets an average annual GDP growth of 6.5-7 percent for the 2021-2025 period, and to bring per capita GDP to a new high of $4,700-5,000 by 2025.

The World Bank said in a recent report that Vietnam will be one of only two ASEAN members to record positive growth this year, the other being Myanmar.

It forecast Vietnam’s growth at 2.8 percent for the year. While this is drastically down from last year’s 7.02 percent, it is a highly creditable performance considering the contraction experienced by major economies worldwide.

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