Feb 18, 2020 / 11:20

Vietnam to go for difficult option amid Covid-19 outbreak

The Hanoitimes - The government is committed to ensuring not only the best business environment, but also the best living environment for the people and investors.

Instead of closing all doors to prevent the spread of Covid-19 epidemic, Vietnam would chose the hard way, allowing free movement of people and boosting trade and commerce while ensuring people’s health, according to Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc.

 Overview of the meeting. Source: VGP. 

Despite the complicated epidemic, Vietnam remains a safe destination for tourists and businesspeople, Phuc said at a government meeting discussing measures against Covid-19 outbreak on February 17.

Phuc recalled Vietnam’s efforts to contain the outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) in just 45 days in 2003, which were acknowledged by the World Health Organization (WHO) as the first country in the world to successfully control the epidemic.

At present, with all resources under disposal and strong determination, Vietnam is confident to repeat such a feat, Phuc said. In reality, the country is doing well in regard to preventing the spread of the virus, thanks to positive response from the public and drastic measures from all agencies, he added.

More importantly, seven out of 16 infected people in Vietnam have tested negative with the virus after treatment, Phuc stated.

According to Phuc, Vietnam remains a safe destination naturally, not only because of effective anti-virus measures, but also because the weather is getting warmer across the country.

“Foreign tourists could come to Vietnam not only for feeling safe, but also for healthier and unique experience,” Phuc said.

Phuc said in certain economic sectors, local enterprises have overcome challenges from the outbreak and even found opportunities in difficult moments, which is a reason why business and production activities have not been ceased as the epidemic goes on.

Nevertheless, Phuc noted the Vietnamese government must do its utmost to achieve socio-economic development targets for 2020 even at the face of significant impacts from the epidemic.

Phuc added the containment of the epidemic is only a job half done, and the bigger issue would be to mitigate its impacts on the economy and people's lives.

Phuc stressed investors and enterprises should go ahead with their respective business plans, as the government is committed to ensuring not only the best business environment, but also the best living environment for the people and investors.

In the meantime, the government would provide supporting policies to boost economic growth and production, Phuc stressed.

The Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) has forecast Vietnam’s GDP growth to fall to a 7-year low of 5.96% in 2020, suggesting the country would be among four economies hardest hit by the Covid-19 epidemic, behind Singapore, Thailand and Hong Kong (China).