Lawmakers divided on debt collecting firms

Wednesday, May 27, 2020 07:58

A restaurant in downtown HCM City covered in red paint. Spraying debtors' resident or shop with red paint is a common practice used by debt collectors. — Photo

Several deputies called for a ban on debt collecting during a debate between lawmakers at the National Assembly’s session today.

Some lawmakers slammed the debt collection industry, citing numerous incidents in which criminal gangs were found behind or closely linked to debt collecting firms and had reportedly terrorised, blackmailed and threatened victims.

Deputy Tran Van Tien from Vinh Phuc Province, a supporter of the ban, said debt collection itself wasn't a problem, but the criminal gangs that operated under the guise of those firms were.

Tien said a comprehensive report to evaluate the impact of a ban should be carried out.

On the other hand, many said debt collecting is a legitimate demand of society and should be allowed to operate provided firms could meet all requirements and follow a code of conducts set by law. A set of rules to oversee firms' activities was needed to prevent similar incidents from taking place, according to lawmakers.

Deputy Mai Hong Hai from Hai Phong City said debt collecting firms were needed as current debt settlement regulations and mechanisms remained highly complex and inefficient. Instead of a ban, Hai called for a review of regulations in the field.

Deputy Tran Hoang Ngan from HCM City said Viet Nam could learn from existing rules and restrictions on firms’ activities in the US and elsewhere.

At the session, lawmakers also voiced concerns over the illegal trade of human fetal tissue for profit.

“The NA Standing Committee takes this matter seriously and is considering adding the trade of human fetal tissue to the current ban of human and human body part trafficking,” said Chairman of the NA’s Committee on Economic Affairs Vu Hong Thanh.

In another development, the NA Standing Committee added portable water production to the country’s list of businesses that needed special requirements, citing its importance to the public. — VNS

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