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Vacations give workers the time they need to recuperate

Update: March, 17/2015 - 09:38

Long holidays do not lead to low production as some think, Vu Quang Tho, director of the Workers and Trade Union Institute, told the Hai Quan (Customs) newspaper.

Some people believe that the long holidays will have a negative impact on domestic production. What's your point of view?

The anxiety expressed by some people is easy to understand. Recently, we had nine days off during the Lunar New Year festival, so the two holidays are very close.

However, the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs has its own reasons to combine the holidays for the three even. It says a long holiday enables Government officials, public employees as well as private workers to have longer time to recuperate their health for future production.

A long holiday offers them opportunities to visit places of interest and do some shopping. These activities should be considered as encouraging consumption and generating more income for non-State enterprises.

In addition, as one of the objectives of our Labour Code is to help public employees, the long holidays will help improve quality of life for and labourers and workers. That's why I support the Government's decision.

Some people have expressed anxiety that the two long holidays next to each other will affect labour productivity? What's your position?

The Government's decision to let public employees and workers have six days off to commemorate the Hung Kings, South Viet Nam Liberation Day and May Day is totally in line with the Labour Code.

In addition, the labour ministry has also announced the holiday schedule in advance so that the enterprises can work out their production plans and use of labour.

As you've mentioned, long holidays have their supporters and their detractors. But many people argue that the negative side has more supporters. Do you agree?

In my opinion, long or short holiday, can be considered good or bad. I just want to reiterate that the long holiday decided by the Government does not force enterprises to close. However, workers, particularly those from industrial parks or export processing zones, have to work very hard, so they need time to recuperate.

I agree that long holidays may not be suitable for some, but they have positive impacts for the majority of working people, so I support the move.

Some economics experts have proposed that the Government should combine all public holidays into one packet so that it will not affect production or labour productivity. How do you respond to that?

As I have mentioned above, holidays are the time for working people to relax, recuperate their health and to improve their quality of life. It is also an occasion for them to regenerate their production forces.

So if we combine all the holidays in one pack, what will the pros and cons be? It we just look at it through economic lens. The pros and cons will be different for each occupation, particularly tourism, entertainment and restaurants.

Here I want to share the difficulties with enterprises facing problems when workers have long holidays. In my opinion, the simple solution may be for employers to pay higher salaries for workers willing to work during the holidays.

In addition, whether there should be a long or short holiday, a factor we have to take into account is the Vietnamese traditional culture. I still remember, several years ago, there was a suggestion on the combining of the two holidays of the calendar year with the traditional lunar new year.

But such a proposal didn't receive a consensus, as in Viet Nam, traditional culture is something sacred in the heart of all Vietnamese citizens. — VNS

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