Viet Nam News
HCM CITY — Ways to improve Việt Nam’s business environment and competitiveness were discussed at a seminar in HCM City on April 19.
Đậu Anh Tuấn, head of the Việt Nam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI)’s legal department, said business licensing procedures have improved in the last two decades.
But a survey by the VCCI last year found that there are still 5,719 types of sub-licences.
Phan Đức Hiểu, deputy director of the Central Institute for Economic Management (CIEM), said the biggest challenge is the unpredictability of administrative reforms. He said the country has struggled with business sector reforms since 1998.
Many neighbouring countries have achieved their targets in reforming their business environment while Việt Nam has not seen much progress, he said.
Nguyễn Minh Thảo, head of CIEM’s business environment and competitiveness committee, said the Government’s Resolution No 19 on improving the business environment and the country’s competitiveness issued in 2014 has helped Việt Nam improve its business climate ranking by 14 places to 68th in the world last year.
Electricity supply, investor protection and tax payment indicators have all improved, she said.
However, many other areas like asset use, ownership registration and bankruptcy handling have seen little improvement, she said.
Besides, only the Ministry of Finance has sought to improve cross-border trade regulations while 12 other ministries have failed to do so, she said.
If the time taken for cross-border trade is cut by a day, a lot of money could be saved, she said.
CIEM figures also reveal that since the launch of Resolution No 19, Việt Nam’s business environment and competitiveness have improved though the targets have not been reached.
Thảo said Việt Nam’s business environment ranks fifth in ASEAN behind Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, and Brunei.
According to CIEM director Nguyễn Đình Cung, Việt Nam’s ranking in the business starting index was low and kept falling steadily between 2014 and 2017 despite Resolution No 19.
As for the abolishment of business conditions, ministries have reported the scrapping of hundreds of them, such as the Ministry of Industry and Trade eliminating over 650 conditions. However, they have also added new conditions.
The seminar, titled “Improve the quality of the business environment: Reform business conditions, specialised management and administrative formalities”, was held by the the United States Agency for International Development and CIEM. — VNS