Vietnam calls for stepped-up reforms and corruption fight

AP News
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Posted: Sep 15, 2015 12:15 AM

HANOI, Vietnam (AP) — Vietnam's ruling Communist Party has called for reforms and a stepped-up fight against corruption as it prepares for an upcoming party congress.

The calls were included in the draft political report released on the Communist Party's website and in most daily newspapers Tuesday and designed to garner ideas from the public.

The report said the country has recorded important achievements over the past 30 years, but it still faces problems with increasing public debt, and low economic productivity and competitiveness, adding that more needs to be done to transform Vietnam into an industrial nation by 2020.

The party congress, held every five years, is set to be held early next year when the ruling party lays out its course for the next five years and selects new leadership.

"The renewal process must be stepped up comprehensively," the report said of the party's goals for the next five years. "The economy must be developed fast and sustainably, building the foundation to soon develop our country into an industrial nation."

The party set goals of gross domestic products growth of 6.5 percent to 7 percent annually over the next five years. GDP growth averaged nearly 6 percent a year over the past five years.

The report said corruption is a major challenge to the regime's survival and that efforts must be boosted to fight graft.

"The fight against corruption has not met its goals and expectations," it said. "Corruption remains serious with increasingly sophisticated and complicated practices ... causing public discontent, and poses a challenge to the leading role of the party and management efficiency of the state and threatens the survival of the regime."

It said some high-profile corruption cases have been brought to justice, but more efforts, including reforming laws and policies, are needed to fight graft.