PM directs recovery following damage from social disorder

Thursday, May 22, 2014 08:16

Deputy Prime Minister Vu Van Ninh meets with officials of the southern province of Binh Duong and representatives from foreign and domestic enterprises, including those affected by the recent anti-Chinese protests. He has affirmed Vietnam's policy of creating the best possible conditions for foreign businesses and investors in Vietnam and ensuring their legitimate rights in accordance with the country's law as well as international practices. — VNA/VNS PhotoQuach Lam

HA NOI (Biz Hub) — Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has laid out a set of initiatives to support businesses that were harmed by recent social disorders.

He has asked ministries and agencies nationwide to enact these measures as soon as possible.

Rioting recently erupted to protest China's illegal construction of its oil rig Haiyang Shiyou – 981 in early May in Viet Nam's continental shelf and exclusive economic zone.

During the disorders, protesters destroyed property belonging to the State, businesses and individuals, including foreign firms, and disobeyed law enforcement officials, disrupting social order and business activities. Thanks to the Government's timely intervention, most affected companies have returned to work and social order and security has been ensured.

Under the PM's orders, the Foreign Ministry will be responsible for updating countries and territories worldwide on Viet Nam's current situation, to encourage firms to continue operating in the country.

Further, ministries, authorities and workers are requested to remain united to share their common interests. Relevant units will work with affected companies in a constructive manner, jointly implementing proper support measures.

Dung asked the People's Committees in affected cities and provinces to send officials to work directly with each enterprise, in a bid to learn more about the real situation, while immediately announcing which agencies were responsible for handling issues related to administrative affairs, damage assessment and support policies.

He also assigned the Ministry of Finance to coordinate with relevant ministries, agencies and localities and guide insurance companies to verify damage and provide sufficient compensation in a prompt and simplified manner.

Further, the ministry has been asked to direct tax and customs agencies, on the basis of real losses incurred by the firms, to extend the deadline for submitting their tax declarations, as well as tax and budget payments arising before May 2014.

The longest extension will be two years, and punishment will not be applied for late payments by affected enterprises.

The involved firms will be given reductions in their import and export duty rates and favourable conditions in their import-export activities.

They will also receive value added tax refunds, or a reduction for their uncompensated input goods and services, even in cases of their having no receipts.

Additionally, Dung asked tax agencies to provide guidelines to those firms declaring their enterprise income taxes so that they can receive tax reductions for the damage and uncompensated property.

Further, a maximum 30 percent of reductions in special consumption taxes for 2014 will also be applied, according to the PM.

The people's committees of provinces and centrally-run cities are to apply exemptions or reductions in land rental fees for damaged enterprises. In case the firms rent infrastructure, along with land use rights, the companies that manage the infrastructure will be exempted or receive reduced land rental fees. The money will then be deducted in the hiring fees paid by the damaged firms.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Public Security will create favourable conditions in granting visas to the damaged companies that require additional foreign workers. To cater to the urgent demand of labour, the granting of work permits to foreigners living in Viet Nam for over six months will only need police records issued by Vietnamese authorised agencies.

Regarding the damaged businesses that have not yet resumed normal production and are unable to pay salaries to workers from April to June this year, the labour ministry and the Viet Nam Social Insurance agency will coordinate with the provincial and municipal people's committees to assess the provided lists and apply unemployment insurance benefits.

Also, the labour ministry and the finance ministry will oversee the implementation of localities and then submit to the Prime Minister their solutions, along with measures applied after June 2014.

Additional assistance will come from the State Bank of Viet Nam, which will instruct credit organisations to take timely and necessary measures to remove obstacles for transactions and loans in order to help affected businesses to resume and continue their production soon.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Public Security will instruct prosecutors to strictly punish law violators without delay, while tracking down and returning looted assets and technical equipment to the affected organisations, individuals and businesses.

Support plans

In a related move, Deputy Prime Minister Hoang Trung Hai led a working group to the northern province of Ha Tinh yesterday to inspect the Formosa deep-sea port project in the Vung Ang Economic Zone and talk to the project's managers and province leaders.

During his talks with the Formosa project's leaders and staff, Hai said the Government and local authorities would strictly punish those involved in the riots that caused damages to those involved in the project, while protesting China's illegal construction of an oil rig in Viet Nam's continental shelf.

He requested the authorities of Ha Tinh to co-operate with relevant State agencies to ensure complete safety for companies and workers in the province, especially foreign companies and foreign workers.

So far, 33 enterprises and contractors, with nearly 7,400 workers, have returned to work, thanks to the intervention of the local government.

Also yesterday, Deputy Prime Minister Vu Van Ninh also met with leaders of the southern province of Binh Duong, as well as local and foreign business associations and investors in industrial zones, to discuss solutions to the challenges to the business operation of companies in the province, as well as methods for recovery.

Ninh reassured businesses that the Government had ordered an investigation and strict punishment of those that had caused damages to business operations during the riots and requested public announcements about the results of the investigation. He also said the Government had committed to having effective measures to prevent a repetition of similar cases.

According to the Binh Duong Province's People's Committee, more than 95 per cent of companies affected by the riots have so far resumed operations. — VNS

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