Vietnam aims for GDP growth "higher' than 6.5 percent

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Vietnam is aiming for annual gross domestic product growth of 6.5 percent after 2012, Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Sinh Hung said in a document released at the National Assembly in Hanoi Thursday.

Vietnam aims to slow inflation to a single digit after 2012, Hung said in the document.

The government has scaled back its growth forecast for 2011 to 6 percent from an original prediction of 7 to 7.5 percent. That would compare with 6.8 percent last year.

Vietnam wants to use monetary tools to reduce interest rates to "reasonable levels" to help businesses and "ease pressure" on inflation, Hung said in the document. The country will continue a "tight, cautious" monetary policy for the rest of the year, with monthly and quarterly controls on lending growth, he added.

The State Bank of Vietnam has purchased US$4 billion to add to its foreign exchange reserves, according to the document. It did not elaborate the period during which the foreign exchange purchase occurred.

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