Vietnam to evaluate business reform results

HANOI (VIET NAM NEWS/ANN) – For the first time, Vietnam plans to announce differences between business rules before and after removals or simplifications to evaluate the efficiency of reform efforts.

The idea was proposed in a draft for a government resolution on improving the business climate and national competitiveness which the Ministry of Planning and Investment recently published for comments.

The draft said comparisons between business prerequisites before and after alterations as of the end of 2019 must be made public within the first quarter of 2020.

According to Nguyen Minh Thao from the Central Institute of Economic Management, who was in charge of compiling the resolution, many ministries reported they had been aided by the removal and simplification of business rules.

However, Thao said several removals and simplifications did not make things better.

For example, she pointed out that in labour safety evaluation, before reforms, licences were granted by the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs, but now involved by ten ministries.

“If we don’t have comparisons – a comprehensive look, we could hardly evaluate whether the reforms are good or not,” Thao said.

Despite significant efforts and improvements in recent years, Vietmam’s business climate and competitiveness remains relatively low at fifth in ASEAN.

In ASEAN, Vietnam comes after Singapore (which ranks second in the world), Malaysia (12th), Thailand (21st) and Brunei (66th).

The draft targets Vietnam jumping by five to seven spots in the ranking of the World Bank about ease of doing business next year from the current 70th position.

Thao said this would not be easy because no any economy stands still. In the 2019 ranking, Vietnam earned higher scores but lost one spot because other economies moved faster.

Thao said the draft would raise a number of detailed measures to improve the business climate, focussing on improving the country’s rankings of indicators like starting a business, paying taxes, dealing with construction permits, getting credit and protecting minority investors. Focus will be placed on completing the draft Law on Enterprise, promoting online public services and cashless payments.

Thao said the success of the resolution would be evaluated by enterprises and investors.

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said at a meeting with enterprises early this week that the resolution would be issued soon.