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‘Revise Accounting Law' says Minister

Update: May, 23/2015 - 06:32
Workers of HCM City's Saigon Transportation Mechanical Corporation (SAMCO) at its production-line. SAMCO, designated by the government as one of the four corporations undertaking a key task of developing Viet Nam's automotive industry has 9,000 labourers.— VNA/VNS Photo An Hieu

HA NOI (VNS)— Reporting to the 13th National Assembly yesterday, Finance Minister Dinh Tien Dung stressed the need to revise the Accounting Law to build a complete legal framework that would hold relevant bodies responsible for abiding by international regulations and standards of accounting.

"It is essential to increase the quality of our accounting practices, satisfying requirements for socio-economic development in the context of a state-managed market economy, and for national integration into the world," Dung told NA deputies on the third sitting day of the 9th session.

"The revision and supplementation of the law will facilitate the management and supervision of the State, business community, investors and the people."

A general assessment of the law's progress since it took effect on January 1, 2004, shows that the law has developed into a highly enumerated piece of legislation, bearing quite a few highly technical and practical guidelines.

"The Law provides a fundamental legal framework for accounting activities, contributing to and enhancing management efficiency and effectiveness of financial resources," said Chairman of the NA's Finance and Budget Committee, Phung Quoc Hien, who presented a report examining the amendment proposals for the current accounting law.

Despite its success, Hien's report highlighted numerous shortcomings that need remedying. Accounting regulations remain incomplete and financial management and accounting regimes have not worked in tandem.

The report indicates that the country's rapidly changing business environment, the opening of the market and international integration require that finance and accounting mechanisms and policies be quickly adjusted.

"One of the goals set in the Accounting – Auditing Strategy to 2020 is to intensify international integration, creating a close association and mutual recognition between Viet Nam and countries around the world, as well as with international organis-ations," Hien told NA deputies.

Hien said, however, the proposals still, "do not clearly stipulate standards that satisfy the requirements of international integration".

Hien recommended that the proposed changes include articles specifying the process of making State financial reports, detailing the value of State accounting information and spelling out the proper use of State accounting information.

"Regulations should also be added to protect accountants," Hien said.

NA deputies will discuss the amendments to the Accounting Law on May 29 and June 10. If approved, the amended law would take effect on July 1, 2016.

Many national Assembly deputies agreed to revise Article 60 of the 2014 Law on Social Insurance in the first discussion yesterday morning after labourers voiced their opposition.

A Government report on the article was presented to the NA by Minister of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs Pham Thi Hai Chuyen on Thursday. It aimed to increase the number of employees receiving pensions during retirement, and the Government asked for modifications to increase the policy's flexibility.

The article's writers wanted to narrow down the number of people able to receive lump-sum payments to those with acute diseases such as cancers, AIDs and leprosy. They wanted more to keep receiving monthly pension payments. This was the best way to ensure long-term social security for employees, lawmakers agreed.

Deputies Nguyen Bac Son and Chu Son Ha of Ha Noi asserted that the law sounded good, but wouldn't work for the majority of labourers in the private sector, more of whom wanted lump sums instead of having to wait.

Private enterprises aren't as stable. They go bankrupt more often and offer employees lower payments, so many of their employees are unskilled and work only seasonally. So for them to wait 20 years for all that's due to them would be quite difficult.

Deputy Nguyen Trong Nghia from HCM City said labourers' reactions indicated that the article didn't reflect the reality of the situation. However, it was imperative to hold a referendum among people the law affected directly, said deputy Phuong Huu Viet from Binh Duong.

Deputy Le Dinh Khanh from Hai Duong said the article was discussed at many conferences – but they didn't involve labourers in the conversation. Trade unions represent labourers, but they're staffed by officials. This creates another middleman between labourers and those who create the policies that affect them.

Deputies Nguyen Bac Son, Chu Son Ha, Trinh The Khiet (Ha Noi), Do Thi Hoang (Quang Ninh), Nguyen Van Danh (Tien Giang), Nguyen Xuan Ty (Ben Tre), Truong Trong Nghia and Vo Thi Dung (HCM City) maintained that the law was a positive change, but its tenets were impractical and difficult to achieve. It needed to be revised, they said.

"The payment of a one-off lump sum is just a provisional measure, only satisfying a section of labourers," said deputy Nguyen Van Danh. "Regulations should be thoroughly assessed from different angles and aspects. More importantly, we must reduce the number of people that do not have retirement pensions when they get old, reducing the burden on the State and society." — VNS

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