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Red tape rankles Ha Noi

Update: March, 29/2013 - 09:28

Nearly three quarters of citizens unsatisfied with administrative hurdles

A resident submits documents to obtain driving licences in Ha Noi's Transport Department. The city's leaders consider administrative reform a burning issue, urging efforts from enterprises, organisations and residents to tackle red tape. — VNA/VNS Photo The Duyet

HA NOI (VNS)— Barely 26 per cent of surveyed people in Ha Noi were satisfied with the attitude of administrative staff, indicating that efforts to cut red tape in the city face huge hurdles.

While remarkable progress had been made in reforming bureaucracy from grass roots levels, the city's departments still received continuous complaints from enterprises and residents, said secretary of the city's Party's Committee Pham Quang Nghi at a conference in the capital yesterday.

In a 2011 survey, most respondents agreed that the city's civil servants were well aware of their work procedures and roles, but said their level of responsibility and enthusiasm were low.

Overlapping, obsolete and unrealistic policies and regulations presented major obstacles to reform, Nghi said. To make matters worse, people in charge often lacked a sense of responsibility and some were corrupt.

Most of the complaints related to public servants who tried to "pass the buck" onto others or asked for money from people they were supposed to help – an enticing move given that wages for public servants hover around VND3 million (US$144) per month.

The lack of serious inspections and stringent penalties for corruption means that there is little deterrent to stop such behaviors.

Nghi framed red tape as one of the major barriers in the way of the city's move towards industrialisation and modernisation.

He also said it might be one of the underlying reasons beneath Ha Noi's recent fall in the national competitive index.

"Administrative reform must be drastic and done by the entire political system," Nghi said.

"This is a burning issue. Creating change should be an aspiration of enterprises, organisations and residents."

While the city has poured both labour and money into the task of reform, the desired outcome still has not been achieved.

Nghi called on all relevant individuals to treat the job in a more responsible and professional manner.

To be gauged

Under the Prime Minister's Decision 263/QD-TTg, people and businesses will provide systematic annual feedback on how well state agencies have implemented public administrative procedures, creating a basis for gauging the impact of reform efforts.

Officials discussed what questions should be included on the relevant questionnaire during a separate workshop held in the city yesterday by the Administrative Procedure Control Agency (APCA) and the International Finance Corporation (IFC).

The questionnaire will assess the quality and attitude of public servants for 24 key groups of public administrative procedures in need of drastic reform.

According to the APCA, results from these surveys will serve as a reference for the advisory panel on administrative procedures reform to advise the Prime Minister on the next steps. — VNS


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