Illustrative photo. Source: suckhoedoisong.vn
Ngô Gia Cường, director of the Việt Nam Auditing and Evaluation Company Limited, talks to Đấu thầu (Bidding) newspaper about the rocketing prices of medical equipment in Việt Nam.
What do you think about the large gap between the retail price of imported medical equipment and the price declared on customs declarations?
According to Circular 25/2014 issued by the Ministry of Finance, the formula to define the imported cost of a product at the Vietnamese border includes insurance and freight fees, plus the import tax and special consumption tax where applicable.
Importers also have to pay for other expenses including financing and transportation costs. These expenses are added to the price of a product along with a profit margin.
However, subjective elements that impact the price also depend on many other factors in society.
Do you have any comments on the sky rocketing prices of medical equipment highlighted by the price appraisal unit in Việt Nam recently?
Appraising the value of a product is a job that comes with many risks, particularly in the medical equipment area.
In Việt Nam, the procurement of medical equipment is almost a monopoly, with one person buying from one seller. This monopoly has led to the problem of limited market information and put appraisal experts in a tricky position.
Another issue that can occur is when the experts don’t actually have the necessary knowledge of medical equipment to perform their jobs. So, everything should be transparent right from the start, including tight control of the development of the tender document, payment protocol and others.
Do you have any advice for the price appraisal consultation unit?
My advice for the price appraisal unit is to protect themselves from any risks they may face. The Certificate of Value is the final product – a summary of the appraisal report. That’s why it should be considered “a shield” to protect the price appraisal consultation unit. It shows the unit has worked independently and objectively. The appraisal report should be as detailed as possible for the whole process.
Last but not least, each price appraisal unit should develop their own norms based on the common standards set by the Vietnamese Government on risk management, and avoid any wrongdoing by staff to protect the company’s reputation. — VNS