6.5 pct growth in 2022 a feasible target: lawmaker

By Staff reporters   November 9, 2021 | 04:23 pm PT
6.5 pct growth in 2022 a feasible target: lawmaker
A worker arranges steel bars in northern Lao Cai Province, November 4, 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Giang Huy
The government’s goal of 6–6.5 percent growth next year is achievable if the Covid-19 situation remains under control and public investment is utilized well, a lawmaker says.

The growth can even exceed the target, supported by a stable macro economy, the recovery of major export markets such as the U.S. and Europe, and the many free trade agreements Vietnam has signed, including 14 that have taken effect, Tran Hoang Ngan, head of the Ho Chi Minh City Institute for Development Studies, said at a National Assembly session Tuesday.

To ensure growth, the government needs to focus on disbursing VND526 trillion ($23.25 billion) worth of public investment, which is "both an opportunity and a challenge," he said.

However, some lawmakers expressed concerns that the public debt ratio could rise as the government plans stimulus packages, posing financial risks.

The estimated public debt ratio of 44 percent of GDP this year looks low, but this has come about after adjusting some data, which caused GDP to increase by VND1,000 trillion, said Nguyen Huu Toan, deputy chairman of the National Assembly’s Finance and Budget Committee.

"The ratio looks low but it is a matter of serious concern."

Over the last 10 years, public debt has risen 18.1 percent and 6.5 percent in the 2011-2015 and 2016-2020 periods, respectively, Toan said.

If public debt increases by 11 percent in the 2021-2025 period it would reach VND6,500 trillion by the end of 2025, he added.

"We need to have economic recovery programs but will also need to avoid risks with financial resources."

Vietnam’s economy expanded by 2.9 percent last year and its public debt was 55.3 percent of GDP.

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