Price adjustment to avoid year-end accumulation

The Government Office has just issued Notice 348/TB-VPCP on the conclusion of Deputy Prime Minister Le Minh Khai, Head of the Price Executive Steering Committee, at the Price Executive Steering Committee meeting on the results of price management and administration in the first 7 months of 2023 and the orientation of price management and administration in the last months of 2023.

Price adjustment of necessities to reduce the negative impacts on the poor
Ensure adequate supply to avoid shortages and price fever. Photo: T.T.

The National Assembly set an average consumer price index target of 4.5% for 2023. To achieve the goal of controlling inflation, ministries and branches must proactively grasp the situation, exploit the remaining fiscal space to proactively implement price plans according to the prescribed schedule, and promptly propose and advise the Government and Prime Minister on solutions that are appropriate for the current situation.

In particular, it is of utmost importance to closely monitor global price and inflation trends and to promptly identify and warn of potential risks of inflation in the country. It is also vital to effectively and flexibly regulate and stabilize prices of state-managed goods to maintain stability in the economy.

Ministries, branches, and localities must fully prepare sources of goods so that supply is not disrupted, particularly food items, foodstuffs, essential consumer goods, and services, in order to promptly meet people's needs, especially during holidays, like Tet holidays, and tourism seasons, when consumer demand frequently soars.

The Deputy Prime Minister has requested that monetary policies be implemented proactively and flexibly, in line with the situation, in close coordination with fiscal policies and other macroeconomic policies, in order to control inflation, maintain macroeconomic stability, and promote growth according to set goals. Furthermore, the authorities need to carefully assess and calculate the impact of ongoing fiscal policies promoting rebound and development that will expire in the near future to propose appropriate measures, policy solutions, and administration as soon as possible.

Regarding state-managed goods and public services implementing the market scheme, there must be a specific plan on the scheme, including the time of adjustment, the level of adjustment, the calculation of the impact on the socioeconomic ground, and the goal of controlling inflation in each period. In the context of relatively wide inflation space for state agencies to adjust prices of state-managed goods, it is necessary for them to actively develop a synchronous and specific price adjustment plan and scheme associated with the appropriate level and time. As a result, the price adjustment avoids accumulating in the final month of the year, or at the same time to limit the collective impact, relieve pressure on price management, and control inflation in subsequent years.

Simultaneously, authorities must devise a strategy to mitigate the negative effects of price increases in essential commodities on the poor and vulnerable groups.

Carefully evaluate appropriate time to adjust the prices of essential services

The Deputy Prime Minister has urged all ministries, branches, and localities to effectively implement and supervise the declaration and listing of prices, publicize price information, ensure compliance with the price law, and check the factors affecting price formation as per the price law. It is essential to ensure uniformity and consistency in the implementation of price management and administration measures by central and local agencies when developing legal documents.

Moreover, it is fundamental to continue to promote information and propaganda, ensuring timely, transparent, and complete information on prices and price administration of the Government, the Steering Committee for Price Administration, particularly the price evolution of important materials, essential goods related to production and individuals' lives to stabilize consumer psychology, and ensure effective control of inflation, particularly inflation expectation.

The Deputy Prime Minister has also requested People's Committees of provinces and cities to actively perform state management of goods within their jurisdiction, strengthen inspection and supervision of the implementation of price declaration and price listing, publicize price information, inspect price law observance, strictly handle cases of speculation, hoarding, and unreasonable price increase, and proactively check price formation fact under price law when goods have experienced unusual fluctuations.

The Deputy Prime Minister has proposed that the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development collaborate with the Ministry of Industry and Trade to closely monitor market fluctuations, prices, production situation, and supply, particularly agricultural products at the main crop to orient production and business to meet market demand, ensure individuals' and businesses' interests, ensure food security, national reserves, and contribute positively to exports.

Concerning educational services and materials, the Ministry of Education and Training has collaborated with the Ministries of Labor, War Invalids and Social Affairs, Ministry of Finance, and other agencies to advise the Government and Prime Minister on the scheme, level, and time to adjust the price of educational services accordingly.

The Ministry of Health must urgently review and promulgate economic and technical norms as a basis for adjusting the prices of medical examination and treatment services; evaluate and select appropriate times to structure costs into service prices in line with the market scheme; and complete the Circular on adjusting the prices of medical examination and treatment services in accordance with the basic salary as soon as possible, and then report to the Prime Minister and the Price Executive Steering Committee before promulgating the Circular, completed in August 2023./.