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Strategic breakthroughs in the Draft Documents submitted to the 13th National Party Congress

(LLCT) - Based on the reality of Vietnam’s development over the past 35 years of renovation, the Draft Documents submitted to the 13th National Party Congress affirm three strategic breakthroughs on institution, human resources and infrastructure. The article focuses on analyzing the scientific, practical and purposive aspects of the above-mentioned breakthroughs.

The Documents submitted to the 13th National Party Congress recognize the strategic significance of the breakthroughs that were identified at the 11th and 12th Party Congresses. At the same time, they affirm their long-standing values which are applied in each stage of the revolution. To meet the requirements for the fast and sustainable development strategies of the 2021-2025 period, three following breakthroughs should be highlighted:

First, “Perfecting synchronously the development institution, first and foremost, the institution for the development of the socialist-oriented market economy. Focusing on completing and implementing synchronously and effectively the legal system, mechanisms and policies in order to create a favorable, wholesome and fair investment and business environment; mobilizing, managing and utilizing all resources for development, especially land and finance; implementing effectively and reasonably decentralization, along with enhancing inspection, supervision and power control”(1). Thus, compared with the content specified in the documents of the 11th Congress: “Perfecting the mechanism of the socialist-oriented market economy, focusing on creating a fair competitive environment and administrative reform”(2), the draft documents submitted to the 13th Congress make a new shift from completing the mechanism of the socialist-oriented market economy to that for the development of the socialist-oriented market economy.

The institution of the socialist-oriented market economy in Vietnam is a system of different factors and elements, each of which is also a complex sub-system of various dependent elements, including: legal regulations, rules of administration, regulation and economy supervision; entities involved in economic activities; the mechanism for the enforcement of the three elements and the adjustment of the relationships among entities. Therefore, the synchronous improvement of the development institution of the socialist-oriented market economy is to complete the legal regulations, the rules of operating, regulating and supervising the economy; entities involved in economic activities; enforcement mechanism of legal regulations; rules of operation, regulation, supervision and adjustment of entities’ relationships.

Obviously, if the legal regulations, the rules of economic administration, regulation and supervision are not synchronized with their enforcement mechanism and the adjustment of entities’ relationships and the entities do not comply well with the legal regulations, the rules of economic administration, regulation, and supervision, as well as the enforcement mechanism, and adjustment of entities’ relationships, the socialist-oriented market economy cannot develop rapidly and sustainably.

Among the three elements, entities involved in economic activities play a decisive role, the two other elements, i.e. legal regulations and enforcement mechanism play an important role.

According to the assessment of the 12th Congress, “the institution of the  socialist-oriented market economy continues to be improved; investment, business environment and the competitive capability have been gradually improved”(3). However, it also cited out that “The socialist-oriented market economic mechanism still has many problems, thus cannot create a breakthrough for socio-economic development. In detail, the mechanism is not really synchronous and smooth enough to become a disruptive driving force to effectively mobilize, allocate and utilize resources for the development investment, improvement of competitive capability and business environment”(4). On the basis of summarizing the implementation of the first breakthrough in the mechanism, the draft documents submitted to the 13th Congress highlight the continuity of giving priority to completing synchronously, effectively and well implementing the legal system, mechanism and policies so as to create a favorable, wholesome, transparent, fair, legitimate and competitive investment and business environment; mobilizing, managing and utilizing all resources for development, especially land and finance; implementing decentralization, enhancing close inspection, supervision and power control. This means on the one hand, in order to synergize the development mechanism of the socialist-oriented market economy, it is necessary to complete the legal framework and policies to ensure a favorable environment for its development; a favorable environment for effective utilization of all resources for the socialist-oriented market economy; reasonable decentralization in combination with enhancing close inspection, supervision and control of power for the socialist-oriented market economy development. On the other hand, right in the process of making breakthroughs in the development institution, Vietnam should pay special attention to perfecting the legal basis, enforcement mechanism of legal regulations, rules of execution, regulations, supervision and adjustment of economic entities’ relationships. Especially, we need to create a fair, wholesome, transparent and competitive environment; an environment for mobilization and use of resources, mainly land and financial resources, decentralization, inspection and power control. Once the legal foundation and implementation mechanism are completed, economic entities will have a good environment and opportunities and the social-oriented market economy will develop quickly and sustainably. These interpretations of the draft documents are evidently based on the reality of Vietnam.

Second, “Developing human resources, especially high-quality human resources; Giving priority to developing human resources for leadership, management and in key fields based on enhancing, creating fundamental changes in the quality of education and training; promoting the research, transfer, application and development of science, technology and innovation; arouse the aspiration for developing a prosperous and happy country, promoting Vietnamese cultural values and humane strength in national construction and defense”(5). Compared with the similar content in the documents of the 12th Congress: “Rapidly developing human resources, especially high-quality human resources, focusing on fundamental and comprehensive renovation of national education in closely association with the development and application of science and technology”(6), the draft documents submitted to the 13th Congress are more comprehensive and specific. Regarding the successes in implementing the breakthrough, the 12th Congress evaluated: “The development of human resources, science and technology has recorded positive achievements”(7); however, “This development has been made slowly; the quality of education and training, especially higher education and vocational training hasn’t been improved significantly and lacked high-quality laborers; the education system hasn’t been interconnected and synchronously organized”(8); Science and technology have not really become the driving force to improve labor productivity, competitiveness and socio-economic development, etc”(9). On the basis of summarizing the implementation of the Resolution of the 12th Congress on the breakthroughs in human resources, the draft documents summitted to the 13th Congress have set out much more specific tasks which give priority to developing human resources for key fields, creating a fundamental change in the quality of education and training, enhancing the transfer, application and development of science and technology, innovate and stir up people’s aspirations for development, promoting Vietnamese cultural values and human strength. This means giving priority to training high-quality human resources for key industries and areas, such as knowledge-based economy, digital economy, climate change response, social development management, etc. These are keys to rapid and sustainable development. As a result, it is necessary to create a breakthrough in the quality of education and training; otherwise, the bottleneck of high-quality human resources cannot be overcome.

Vietnam is in the process of implementing a rapid and sustainable development strategy, thus it is important to accelerate the transfer, application and development of science and technology, innovation and encouraging aspirations for development, bringing into full play Vietnamese cultural values and human strength. Otherwise, Vietnam cannot get out of the middle-income trap.

In view of the fact that if Vietnam keeps on maintaining the traditional growth models and relying on natural resources and cheap labor, we can only escape from hunger but we cannot be prosperous. Therefore, development must be based on the innovation which promotes the application of modern, not outdated, science and technology, while bringing into full play Vietnamese cultural values and human strength to promote Vietnamese people’s will, energy, aspirations for development, diligence, intelligence, creativeness and initiativeness. Vietnam is recognized and much appreciated by the world for successfully preventing and controlling the COVID-19 pandemic. The success in controlling the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted from Vietnam’s will, energy, social consensus, unanimity, the entire nation’s determination, the difficulty sharing and mutual love among the whole Party, army, people and the political system. Those are the promotion of Vietnamese cultural and human value system in the new condition. Those are new points compared with the content of the documents of the 11th and 12th Congresses when discussing high-quality human resources. On implementing this breakthrough, we can carry out the rapid and sustainable development strategy and get out of the middle-income trap. We can strongly believe that the implementation of this breakthrough will be successful because after 35 years of reform, as it said, “Starting from a small, poor, backward country with low educational standard and few people knowing about its name, Vietnam has become a developing country with a population of nearly 100 million, a middle income country and has relations with most of countries in the world, has joined most international organizations and become a member, a reliable and responsible partner of the international community”(10).

Third, “Building a synchronous and modern infrastructure system in terms of both economy and society; giving priority to the development of some national key transportation projects and in response to climate change; attaching importance to improving information and telecommunication infrastructures, creating a national digital transformation, gradually developing the digital economy and digital society”(11). Compared with the documents of the 12th Congress which stated that “Building synchronous infrastructure systems with some modern construction, focusing on transportation systems and large urban infrastructure”(12), the draft documents of the 13th Congress are more comprehensive and specific to practical requirements. Besides clarifying some significant achievements in the field of transport, energy, water works, urban, commercial, information and communication infrastructure(13); the 12th Congress also identified some limitations and shortcomings: “The infrastructure system has not met development requirements. The socio-economic infrastructure systems are still limited and asynchronous with inefficient connection and low quality. The infrastructure planning, especially in big urban areas, has not met the requirements, etc”(14). On summarizing the implementation of the Resolution of the 12th Congress on the infrastructure breakthrough, the draft documents submitted to the 13th Congress mention this issue in a more synchronous and comprehensive way as follows:

First of all, the draft documents mention both economic and social infrastructure, thus, more comprehensive, overall and completed than the previous ones. So far, social infrastructure, such as hospitals, schools, community houses for cultural activities, libraries have not been paid much attention to. The draft documents submitted to the 13th Congress give priority to the development of key transport construction, infrastructure of major urban areas, energy and climate change response infrastructure; attach importance to developing the information and telecommunication infrastructure, create the foundation for the digital economic development. Notably, some new points have been added, including energy infrastructure, works in response to climate change; information and telecommunication infrastructure for digital economic development. These areas are in line with practical requirements. Therefore, compared with the documents of the 11th and 12th Congress, the draft documents submitted to the 13th Congress have made a breakthrough in synchronous, modern economic and society infrastructure system.

According to the above analysis, the three bottlenecks need breakthroughs (in mechanism, human resources and infrastructure) that were first identified at the 11th National Party Congress have been consistently considered throughout the following congresses. This demonstrates the inheritance in solving breakthroughs for the rapid and sustainable development of the country. Based on reviewing the previous congresses, we have gained more awareness and experience to implement the strategic breakthroughs more effectively, in order to meet the increasing requirements of the rapid and sustainable development strategy. Furthermore, these three strategic breakthroughs have a close relationship, dialectical influence and impact on each other. For example, in order to successfully solve the mechanism issue (the 1st breakthrough), we need to achieve the breakthrough in the human resource factors (the 2nd breakthrough). In turns, it is necessary to create favorable mechanisms (the 1st breakthrough) and need modern facilities and techniques with advantageous natural and social conditions (the 3rd breakthrough) when solving the human resource issue. Therefore, right awareness and recognition of breakthroughs will efficiently contribute to the successful implementation of all three breakthroughs.

In order to well complete the key tasks as well as strategic breakthroughs in the period 2021-2025, to create a solid foundation for the rapid and sustainable development of the country and make progress in the coming years, we need to focus on some of the following key requirements:

Firstly, “Consistently and creatively apply Marxism - Leninism, Ho Chi Minh Thought; be consistent to the goal of national independence and socialism and the Party’s innovation in Vietnam’s socialist construction and defense”(15). This must be a fundamental viewpoint in creating strategic breakthroughs. In other words, if we do not steadfastly and creatively apply Marxism - Leninism, Ho Chi Minh Thought, if we do not persevere in the right and comprehensive renewal policy of the Party, we will not have the right ideological foundation to define the objectives, paths and measures for the implementation of strategic breakthroughs in the coming years. Marxism - Leninism, Ho Chi Minh Thought and the Party’s right and comprehensive renewal policies themselves give us the right and scientific viewpoint, optimistic attitude to create strategic breakthroughs.

Secondly, the entire Party, army and the people firmly take the opportunities to overcome difficulties and challenges to continue the reform comprehensively. We all know that the regional and international situation is increasingly complicated and unpredictable; on the other hand, the COVID-19 pandemic still remains complicated and is not yet under control. However, in 2020, Vietnam is one of the few countries which gained a good economic growth in spite of the difficulties caused by natural disasters and epidemics. Therefore, we must quickly overcome difficulties, take opportunities to increase goods export, especially highly competitive agricultural products and boost the economic growth. Socio-political stability and economic growth will help to complete strategic breakthroughs.

Thirdly, the whole country should promote all potential, aspirations and resources for national development in general, and for the implementation of strategic breakthroughs in particular. Our historical national patriotism proves that when the whole nation is united, standing side by side and sharing the common aspiration for development, and promoting all resources, we can cope with any enemy, including foreign invaders and natural disasters, and difficulties, regardless of objective and subjective reasons that can prevent the advancement of the Vietnamese people. Thus, it is essential to tap on the spirit of patriotism, the strong will of national resilience and the development aspirations in the new conditions; bringing into full play the synergy of the entire political system, Vietnamese cultural and human value system; promoting innovation and strong application of science and technology, and so on.

Under the leadership of the Party and the participation of the entire people, we have total trust and physical and spiritual foundations to promote all our potential, aspirations and resources for effective implementation of the strategic breakthroughs identified in the draft documents submitted to the 13th Congress of the Party.

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Endnotes:

(1), (5), (11), (15) CPV: Draft documents submitted to the 13th National Party Congress, https://nhandan.com.vn/tin-tuc-su-kien/cong-bo-cac-du-thao-van-kien-trinh-dai-hoi-xiii-cua-dang-621133/, dated 22-10-2020.

(2), (6), (12) CPV: Documents of the 11th National Party Congress, National Political Publishing House, Hanoi, 2011, pp.106, 106, 106.

(3), (4), (7), (8), (9), (13), (14) CPV: Documents of the 12th National Party Congress, Office of the Party Central Committee, Hanoi, 2016, pp.227, 247-248, 228, 248, 249, 230-231, 250.

(10) General Secretary, State President Nguyen Phu Trong: Good preparation for and implementation of the 13th National Party Congress, bringing the country to a new development period, People’s Daily, 1-9-2020, p.2.

Prof., Dr. TRAN VAN PHONG

Ho Chi Minh National Academy of Politics

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