Overview of the opening ceremony of 13th National Party Congress (Photo: VNA)
The 1,587 delegates in attendance are representing more than 5.1 million Party members nationwide, and the figure is 80 more delegates than at the 12th National Party Congress and the highest number ever.
The 13th National Party Congress has the theme "Strengthening the building and rectification of the Party and the political system into purity and strength; rousing the will and determination for national development and promoting the strength of the great national unity bloc in combination with the power of the era; continuing to comprehensively and synchronously accelerate the cause of reform; constructing and firmly safeguarding the Fatherland and maintaining a peaceful and stable environment; and striving to turn Vietnam into a developed, socialist-oriented nation by the middle of the 21st century."
The Congress's Presidium included members of the 12th-tenure Politburo: Party General Secretary and President Nguyen Phu Trong; Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc; National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan; Permanent member of the Party Central Committee's Secretariat Tran Quoc Vuong; Permanent National Assembly Vice Chairwoman Tong Thi Phong; Permanent Deputy Prime Minister Truong Hoa Binh; Secretary of the Party Central Committee and Chairman of the Party Central Committee's Organisation Commission Pham Minh Chinh; Secretary of the Party Central Committee and Chairman of the Party Central Committee's Commission for Information and Education Vo Van Thuong; Secretary of the Party Central Committee and Chairwoman of the Party Central Committee's Commission for Mass Mobilisation Truong Thi Mai; Secretary of the Party Central Committee and Chairman of the Party Central Committee's Economic Commission Nguyen Van Binh; Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh; Minister of National Defence Ngo Xuan Lich; Minister of Public Security To Lam; Secretary of the Hanoi Municipal Party Committee Vuong Dinh Hue; Head of the delegation of National Assembly deputies of Ho Chi Minh City Nguyen Thien Nhan; and permanent deputy head of the unit in charge of documents for the 13th National Party Congress Hoang Trung Hai. Secretary of the Party Central Committee and President of the Vietnam Fatherland Front Central Committee Tran Thanh Man is also a member of the Congress's Presidium.
Former Party General Secretary Nong Duc Manh; former State Presidents Tran Duc Luong, Nguyen Minh Triet and Truong Tan Sang; former Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung; and former NA Chairmen Nguyen Van An and Nguyen Sinh Hung attended the opening ceremony, along with other leaders and former leaders of the Party, State and Vietnam Fatherland Front, revolutionary veterans, heroic Vietnamese mothers, intellectuals, artists, religious dignitaries and representatives of young generations.
Foreign ambassadors, Chargé d' Affaires and chief representatives of international organisations in Hanoi were also present at the opening ceremony.
With the motto "Solidarity - Democracy - Discipline - Creativeness - Development", the 13th National Party Congress will review not only the implementation of the Resolution of the 12th National Party Congress but also 35 years of implementing the "Doi Moi" (Renewal) process, 30 years of implementing the 1991 Political Platform, 10 years of implementing the amended Political Platform (supplemented and developed in 2011) and the National Socio-economic Development Strategy 2011-2020; setting out socio-economic development orientations and tasks for 2021-2025 (the 50th anniversary of the liberation of the South and national reunification); and determining goals and orientations to 2030 (the 100th founding anniversary of the Party) and a vision for national development to 2045 (the 100th founding anniversary of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam, now the Socialist Republic of Vietnam). These are important milestones in the development process of the Party, the people, and the nation, with the significance of defining orientations and strategic visions for national development in the new era.
The 13th National Party Congress will review Party building work and the leadership of the 12th-tenure Party Central Committee, defining directions and tasks of Party building in the new tenure; assess the performance of the 12th-tenure Party Statutes; and elect the Party Central Committee for the 13th tenure.
Party General Secretary and State President Nguyen Phu Trong speaks at the ceremony (Photo: VNA)
At the opening ceremony, Party General Secretary and State President Nguyen Phu Trong, who is also head of the subcommittee in charge of documents, presented the 12th-tenure Party Central Committee's report on documents submitted to the 13th National Party Congress, focusing on a number of common and basic issues that clear up the major content and important highlights for the congress to consider, discuss, and give decisive opinions.
Draft documents - Crystallised by the brainpower of the entire Party, people
On preparing the draft documents for the congress, the top leader said that, over the past two years, sub-committees have closely coordinated with research agencies, ministries, and sectors at the central level and Party committees at all levels and local administrations to organise nearly 60 conferences, workshops, and seminars and establish 50 working delegations to make field trips and consult former Party and State leaders and experts. Numerous seminars with the World Bank and several other international organisations were also held, while two delegations were arranged to gather experience from abroad.
Theoretical and scientific research agencies sent some 80 consulting and proposal reports to the sub-committees. Many veteran revolutionaries and scientists also sent letters and comments. After being studied and receiving feedback, reasonable opinions were placed into the draft documents.
The sub-committees conducted 20 sessions to discuss and adopt the blueprint and draft documents, while maintaining regular coordination between the sub-committee and the editing team to ensure consistency in content in the documents, including the Political Report as the core. The Politburo held many meetings to give opinions to complete the blueprint and draft documents for submission to the Party Central Committee for feedback, at the 10th, 11th, 14th and 15th meetings of the Party Central Committee.
Draft reports were amended many times and sent to seek feedback from National Assembly deputies, the Vietnam Fatherland Front (VFF) Central Committee, and other organisations and agencies.
The Politburo decided to publicise the full text of the draft reports in the mass media in order to gather opinions from officials, Party members and people both inside and outside the country. Millions of opinions were made on the draft documents and summarised for the Party Central Committee. The opinions were summed up in 1,410 pages, while the general report was 200 pages.
The top leader affirmed that the preparation of the draft documents for the 13th Party National Congress went through many rounds in a meticulous, thoughtful, and methodical manner, being improved at each step with numerous important changes in content and method.
Outstanding imprints create new impetus, enthusiasm
Looking back on the 12th tenure and 35 years of the "Doi Moi" (Renewal) process, the Party General Secretary said that, over the last five years, grasping the advantages and opportunities, and overcoming the challenges and hardships, particularly the negative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and natural disasters, the entire Party, people, and army have upheld a spirit of patriotism, solidarity, determination, mettle, and creativeness to work relentlessly and gain a number of very important and comprehensive achievements. Thanks to such efforts, the country has witnessed robust and sustainable growth with heightened trust among the people in the Party, State, and the socialist regime.
Vietnam's economic growth has averaged 5.9 percent annually, with improved growth quality, a stable macro-economy, inflation kept under control and at a low level, and strengthened financial and State budget discipline.
Total investment has been spurred by enhanced effectiveness, while Vietnam's trade balance has improved with growing export value. The country has also been promoting economic restructuring and renewing the growth model, while improving the business climate and boosting the economy's scale and competitiveness.
The country's political and social stability has been maintained, while living standards of people have been improved, and progress has been seen in social welfare, healthcare, education and training, science and technology, environmental protection, culture, and human development during the period.
Particular attention has been paid to the building and rectification of the Party and the political system in all areas, from politics, ideology, and ethics, to personnel. Supervisory efforts and the fight against corruption and waste have been accelerated, resulting in breakthroughs and real outcomes. Legal proceedings and trials have been launched regarding a large number of major economic and corruption cases, which have been handled vigorously as a warning to others. These moves have received broad support and appreciation from officials, Party members and people.
Against a backdrop of global and regional uncertainties, Vietnam has consolidated and reinforced national defence and security and been proactive in handling all eventualities. The country's political, economic, cultural, and social affairs, alongside social order and safety, have been maintained. External affairs and international integration have been constantly expanded. The country has also demonstrated its firm and persist determination in protecting national independence, sovereignty, unity, and territorial integrity, as well as the country's and the people's interests, while maintaining a peaceful and stable environment for national development and actively and responsibly contributing to global and regional peace, cooperation, and development. These efforts have been highly appreciated by the international community, constantly heightening the Party and State's position as well as the country's stature and strength in the international arena.
Despite the socio-economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Vietnam still recorded significant achievements in 2020 that were even more special than in the previous years, thanks to its outstanding efforts.
While the global economy experienced negative growth of nearly 4 percent, Vietnam still posted positive growth of 2.91 percent, making it one of the world's economies with the highest growth rates.
Vietnam has been regarded by the international community as a bright spot in completing the dual goals of containing the pandemic and recovering the economy.
The Party chief stressed that results gained during the past five years are of special significance as they have not only created milestones but also contributed to consolidating confidence and giving new momentum, enthusiasm to the entire Party, people, and army to firmly overcome all difficulties and challenges and optimise the opportunities and advantages to bring the country to a new stage of development.
Valuable lessons of experience
The top leader pointed out certain lessons of experience learned from the renewal process, especially during the five-year implementation of the Resolution adopted at the 12th National Party Congress.
Party building and rectification must be implemented drastically, comprehensively, synchronously, regularly, and effectively in terms of politics, ideology, morality, organisation, and personnel, he said.
The Party chief stressed the need to persistently pursue and creatively develop Marxism-Leninism and Ho Chi Minh's thought, and to raise the leadership and combat capacity of the Party.
It is necessary to frequently consolidate and strengthen solidarity within the Party and the entire political system, seriously follow principles in Party building, and overhaul the Party's leadership methods.
The leader also highlighted building a pure and strong State and political system, and completing a close power control mechanism.
People should be considered the "root" in all Party and State affairs, he said, underscoring the need to trust, respect, and promote people's right to mastery, and persistently follow the motto of "people know, discuss, do, inspect, supervise and benefit."
He also mentioned tightening the close ties between the Party and the people, consolidating and enhancing people's trust in the Party, the State, and socialism.
The strong determination, great effort, drastic action, dynamism, creativeness, and activeness are needed in leadership, instruction, management and implementation, he said.
The Party General Secretary also ordered the adoption of suitable steps, bringing into full play all the resources, momentum, and advantages of socialism, swiftly removing bottlenecks and promoting the responsibility of leaders, while carrying forward the strength of the entire political system.
Priority should be given to synchronously building development institutions, ensuring harmony between consistency and innovation, between inheritance and development, between economic innovation and political and socio-cultural innovation, between the abidance of market regulations and the assurance of socialist orientations, between economic growth and cultural and human development, between the settlement of social issues and the protection of natural resources and the environment, between socio-economic development and ensuring defence-security, and between independence, self-reliance and international integration. Special attention should be paid to promoting the key role of humans, culture, education and training, and science and technology in national development.
It is also important to proactively study and accurately forecast the situation to avoid passivity and surprise; consistently safeguard independence, sovereignty, unity, and territorial integrity in parallel with maintaining a peaceful environment and security stability and safety for national development; and actively step up international integration intensively and extensively on the basis of maintaining independence, mastery, self-reliance, and self-resiliency, the Party chief said.
He stressed that these lessons are important foundations for the Party to continue making use of and promoting creativeness in leadership and instructions to help the country remain resolute and overcome new difficulties and challenges and heavier tasks when entering the 13th tenure.
Comprehensively and synchronously stepping up the renewal process, rapid and sustainable national development
Regarding orientations and missions for the 13th term and subsequent years, the Party General Secretary emphasised that the entire Party, people, and army should thoroughly grasp such directions as being steadfast in applying and developing Marxism-Leninism and Ho Chi Minh's thought, towards the goal of national independence and socialism, in the Party's renewal guidelines and in Party building principles; and ensuring the highest national interests based on the basic principles of international law, and fair and win-win cooperation to build and safeguard the socialist Vietnamese Fatherland.
This is a matter of principle and is crucial for the country's regime, and a firm foundation for the Party, which cannot be swung by anyone, he stressed.
The country's overall development strategy focuses on speeding up the "Doi Moi" (renewal) process in a comprehensive and synchronous manner, boosting rapid and sustainable development, ensuring strong cohesion and implementing all tasks, with socio-economic expansion playing the core role, Party building being a key matter, cultural development being the moral foundation, and the safeguarding of national defence and security being the central and ongoing task.
NA Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan (ninth from right) poses for a photo with female delegates of Hanoi (Photo: VNA)
The awakening of people's patriotism, national self-resiliency, and strength of great national solidarity as well as the desire for a prosperous and happy nation is an important source of momentum and a resource for growth, along with the promotion of the strength of the entire political system as well as the culture and people of Vietnam, encouraging renovation and the application of science and technology, especially the achievements of the fourth Industrial Revolution.
Meanwhile, a decisive factor in the success of national construction, development, and defence is to continue to strengthen the building and rectification of the Party, and enhance the leadership and ruling capacity as well as the combat strength of the Party.
The general development goal for the 2021-2025 period and following years is improving the leadership and ruling capacity and the combativeness of the Party; building a pure and comprehensively strong Party and political system; reinforcing people's trust in the Party, State and socialism; sparking the desire to develop a prosperous and happy nation with the promotion of the will and strength from the national great solidarity bloc in combination with the power of the era; comprehensively speeding up the cause of renewal, industrialisation, and modernisation; constructing and firmly safeguarding the Fatherland, firmly maintaining a peaceful and stable environment; and striving to turn Vietnam into a socialist-oriented developed country by the middle of the 21st century.
Highlighting the major orientations in important development issues for the country over the next 10 years, the Party General Secretary underlined that the 13th tenure is an important landmark and transitional step, laying the foundation for following tenures to successfully realise the goals included in the national development strategy to 2030 and a vision to 2045.
Promoting the strength of the great national unity bloc
With the motto "Solidarity - Democracy - Discipline - Creativeness - Development", the Party General Secretary asked the congress to undertake careful discussions to reach high consensus and vote for approval of the documents, thus ensuring the success of the congress and paving the way for the popularisation and implementation of the Resolution of the 13th National Party Congress, and successfully completing all set targets and tasks.
The Party leader expressed his belief that with a right direction in line with the rules, the cohesion of the Party policies and people's aspirations, the promotion of the great national unity bloc and the strong desire to rise up as well as high political determination, the entire Party, people, and army is certain to achieve new growth miracles towards the goal of "wealthy people and a strong, democratic, equal and civilised country", thus taking steady steps towards socialism and successfully turning the wish of President Ho Chi Minh and the aspirations of the whole nation into reality.
Following the opening ceremony, Tran Quoc Vuong, member of the Politburo and permanent member of the 12th Party Central Committee's Secretariat, delivered a report reviewing the leadership and direction of the 12th Party Central Committee.
In the afternoon, the congress worked in groups to discuss the draft documents./.