Don961: UN completes 600 projects to support stability in Iraq

21/6/2018 12:00 am

Baghdad / Al-Sabah

The United Nations Mine Action Office (UNMAS) has unveiled more than 600 projects to support the restoration of stability in Iraq. “The Permanent Representative of the Republic of Iraq to the United Nations in Geneva, Ambassador Muayad Saleh, met the Director of the United Nations Mine Action Office (UNMAS), Anias Merkailu, in the presence of the Director of the Office of Iraq, Pierre Ludhammer,” said a statement issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. “He said.

Salih praised the efforts of the Office in managing a number of mine action programs in cities and liberated lands in Iraq. He also stressed the importance of continuing the clean-up and clearance operations as it is the main factor for initiating vital projects and rebuilding infrastructure destroyed by terrorist gangs, “He also confirmed his readiness to communicate with UNMAS in order to develop a strategy to increase support for the Iraqi mine program.” Mirkallo spoke about the Office’s efforts in Iraq to support and assist in the projects of clearance, , Noting the importance of continued access to international support for the continuation of these actions.

For his part, Ludham presented a presentation on the tasks and activities carried out by the Office in the liberated areas, revealing at the same time, the completion of 600 projects to support the restoration of stability in Iraq.    link


Samson:  Vietnam business climate improves

20th June, 2018

The business environment in Việt Nam has improved significantly this year and, as a result, the belief in the future of doing business and the desire to participate in the market is strengthened. This is clearly demonstrated by the increased number of newly registered enterprises.

The statement was made by Đậu Anh Tuấn, head of the Việt Nam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI)’s Legal Department at the 2018 Việt Nam Business Development Forum held in Hà Nội on Tuesday.

In the first five months of this year, the economy registered 52,322 new businesses, a year-on-year increase of 3.5 per cent. The figure for 2017 was 127,000, compared to more than 110,000 in 2016.

In fact, many businesses reported that the working attitude of staff members at authorised agencies has become friendlier and more enthusiastic, while informal expenses dropped from 66 per cent to 59 per cent in 2017.

A number of business conditions, specialised inspections and unreasonable regulations have been reviewed and abolished by the regulators to provide practical support and facilitation to enterprises.

Tuấn pointed out several problems that need prompt action, one of which was the shrinking average size of private enterprises coupled with their weak competitiveness amidst integration and rising competition.

He cited experts’ assessment that the ‘health’ of private enterprises in general has not shown any remarkable improvement. “The private sector also lags behind other economic sectors in terms of participation in national export activities and export performance,” Tuấn said.

He added that private enterprises still face many unfavourable business conditions, for example stricter requirements on workshop areas, specialised equipment, management personnel and capital in some fields than those applied to foreign-invested counterparts.

With regard to the Vietnamese business picture, Trần Thị Hồng Minh, general director of the Agency for Business Registration under the Ministry of Planning and Investment, said that the business registration process had been shortened to 12 working days in 2017, down 12 days compared to 2016.  Up to now, the average time for provinces to issue business registrations averages 2.36 working days (the regulation is three days), and 40 provinces complete the procedures in just two days.

According to Phan Đức Hiếu, deputy head of the Central Institute for Economic Management (CIEM), developing the private sector in terms of quantity and quality is an important driving force in economic development.

Last year, Việt Nam’s competitiveness index also rose five places to 55 out of 137 on the World Economic Forum’s rankingthe business environment increased 14 levels (increasing from 82 out of 190 economies to 68); innovation rose 12 levels, reaching the rank of 47 out of 127 economies. In addition, the tax payment index has increased significantly to 86 out of 190 economies, up 81 places compared to 2016.

Although these indicators increased sharply in the past few years, the reality showed that the results of reform measures have not been as expected. Enterprises have not benefited much from support and services from the authorities. “The solution is not only improving the quality of the business environment, but also creating breakthroughs, towards practical goals and supporting businesses,” Hiếu said.

This requires determination and persistence from the executive level, the Government to local government, ministries and agencies in a harmonized way, he suggested.   LINK