First-ever White Book on Vietnamese Enterprises soon coming to air

09:02 | 12/07/2019
The White Book on Vietnamese Enterprises, the first of its kind ever composed in Vietnam by the Ministry of Planning and Investment, will be published within a few weeks. Nguyen Bich Lam, director general of the General Statistics Office (GSO) under the MPI, explains some of the content of the White Book and the GSO's plans for future publications.
first ever white book on vietnamese enterprises soon coming to air
GSO director general Nguyen Bich Lam

Vietnam has a target of having in place one million operating enterprises by 2020, as noted in the White Book. How do you evaluate the viability of this goal?

Based on our survey, by the end of 2018, Vietnam was home to more than 714,700 operating enterprises. The number of new business setups rose swiftly in the last three years, surpassing 100,000 businesses annually. More than 131,000 new firms were established last year alone.

In the past the other two years, provided that business setups maintain the same pace as in 2018, we would have about 270,000 new businesses in place, driving the total number of local firms to about 970-980,000. I trust the goal is well within reach.

The Ministry of Planning and Investment's (MPI) White Book on Vietnamese Enterprises is the very first attempt to deliver an overall picture of local business development across sectors and localities. Would you share the GSO's plans for future publications?

In fact, there are still some delays in assessing certain aspects of business operation outcomes. As per existing regulations, by the end of the first quarter many enterprises submitted their financial statements to the tax bodies so that we can gather data about their operations at the end of March.

The White Book on Vietnamese Enterprises strives to deliver a comprehensive picture about Vietnamese businesses, helping the government, ministries, and localities to craft strategies and plans for sustainable business development.

Under guidance from the government and the prime minister, we will publish the White Book on Vietnamese Enterprises to disseminate performance in the year running up to the first quarter of the on-going year.

For instance, the White Book on Vietnamese Enterprises 2020 will be presented in the first quarter of that year, detailing statistics about business setups or dissolutions until the end of 2019, while figures about production and business results of enterprises will be those from 2018.

Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue underlined the need to craft a unified set of indices for business assessment. Does the GSO plan to introduce such a set of indices to assess businesses as well as localities?

Last October the GSO held a press meeting at the Government Office that featured assessments about enterprise development level. As the White Book seeks to deliver a comprehensive picture about the real development situation of businesses based on economic sectors, enterprise type, and localities, we have been studying different norms of business operation, striving to build up a general index system leveraging the component indexes.

The White Book also strives to present classification indicators, such as classification regarding new business setups or business dissolutions on a yearly basis based on localities and economic sectors. There are also other figures based on localities, which include the component indexes, from there crafting out a general index set about enterprise development.

Business operations are very complex. In some cases, although expanding production, businesses report poor operation results or even incur losses to mitigate tax payment. Does the White Book cover issues like this?

This is the first time we composed the White Book, we need further input from the wider community, such as reporters, editors, as well as contributions from agencies and organisations in order to make the next White Book more comprehensive.

These inputs will later be included in the survey forms to be sent to enterprises every year to deliver a more accurate picture about business development and to draw out more timely and proper consultations for the use of ministries, sectors, and the government.

By Dinh Thuy

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