National Assembly Deputy Vũ Hồng Thanh, chairman of the National Assembly's Economic Committee, talks to the Vietnam News Agency about the need to separate the impacts of COVID-19 from the operation and performance of State-owned enterprises and State economic groups
What is your assessment of the impacts of COVID-19 on major Vietnamese enterprises and the national economy?
In a report presented at a recent National Assembly meeting, the Government predicted the country’s economic growth in 2020 would be unable to hit the target set by the National Assembly earlier in the year. The reason for the problem is the heavy impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, the national average economic growth rate in Việt Nam over five years will not meet the target set by the National Assembly.
It is projected that the economic performance of public enterprises will fall by about 46 per cent compared to the same period last year. There are various reasons for this, but COVID-19 is one of the main protagonists.
Yet, I think we still have to separate the impacts of the COVID-19 with the real efficiency of the withdrawal of big capital investment in some State-owned enterprises (SOEs). We can't blame it all on the pandemic.
What’s the current status of the equitisation of the SOEs in Việt Nam?
To my knowledge, not many SOEs have expressed interest in equitising. Many people said they were not really happy that in some equitised SOEs, the State still holds the most influential voice in the enterprises’ operation.
In certain economic sectors, labour productivities have increased considerably. Yet, there are quite a lot of things still need to be changed, particularly in capital mobilisation, distribution and the effective use of available resources.
Last but not least, business activities of many SOEs have not yet met their targets, particularly in the effective usage and distribution of the public investment.
What support do SOEs and economic groups need to continue to play the key role in the national economy in the last quarter of the year?
What they must do is complete their assigned missions for the national economy and their own enterprises. In the Vietnamese economy, the State sector still plays the leading role for other sectors to follow.
The State economy has embraced quite many factors, including the SOEs. If the SOEs perform well their role in their production and business, there is no doubt the national economy will be much better and brighter.
Of course, in the present context, like other types of enterprises, the SOEs also need support to recover from the negative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Many SOEs are now on the brink of collapse. I’m confident with proper and timely financial support from the government, these enterprises will be able to stand on their own feet and again play their role as one of the main pillars in the national economy. VNS