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State owned conglomerates unanimously cut workers’ wages   2012-07-18 - Tien phong

Fulfilling the commitments to cut down expenses in 2012 made to the Ministry of Finance, a lot of state owned general corporations have unanimously cut down their workers’ wages by 5-30 percent.


The representatives of the Electricity of Vietnam (EVN) and the Vietnam Coal and Mineral Industries (Vinacomin) have confirmed that the new wage policy has been applied for the last few months.

EVN’s subsidiaries have cut the wages by 10 percent on average. Meanwhile, some workers of the Northern Power Corporation have complained that their wages have been cut by 30 percent. Some of them now receive 5-6 million dong a month only, which includes the fixed salary, bonuses and allowances.

An officer of the Hanoi Power Corporation has revealed that the salaries remain unchanged, but the allowances for the workers at some divisions have been adjusted. The officer said he was told that EVN has to employ the workers from EVN Telecom, which was a subsidiary of EVN but has fallen into the hands of Viettel after many years of taking loss.

“Since the wage fund is limited, every worker would get less money when the number of workers increases,” he said.

“Previously, I could earn 8 million dong a month. However, I only receive 6 million dong now. My wife and I earn a little more than 10 million dong a month. With the modest income, we have to cut down expending and only spend on the basic needs,” he continued.

PetroVietnam, the state owned conglomerate which offers highest salaries to workers, has also cut their workers’ wages.

Phung Dinh Thuc, President of PetroVietnam, has confirmed that the group has told subsidiaries and dependent units to cut down the wage funds by 5-10 percent

“This may lead to the fact that qualified specialists would leave PetroVietnam for other enterprises,” he said.

Therefore, Thuc said, PetroVietnam has decided to apply a flexible policy, under which qualified workers would get high income, while the personnel on other positions have seen the wages cut by 5-10 percent.

A senior executive of EVN said EVN has committed to cut down 1.8 trillion dong in 2012 in expenses. However, he has declined to make comments about the wage cuts.

Cutting down wages not applauded

Pham Chi Lan, a well-known Vietnamese economist, has affirmed that it’s unreasonable for state owned conglomerates to cut down the wages of workers. The government, when committing to cut down costs, affirmed that the workers’ wages would not be lowered.

“The key in the plan to cut down the production costs must be the improvement of the management method which allows to save money and reduce wastes,” Lan said.

“Cutting salaries proves to be the simplest thing. Therefore, this has been implemented by the state owned conglomerates. Meanwhile, other expense items may not be cut,” Lan added.

Also according to Lan, it’s necessary to find out how many percentages the wage fund accounts for in the total expenses by state owned conglomerates and general corporations. In principle, the salaries must be set up in the harmonization with the productivity.

It would be a big waste of the human resources and a big waste of money, Lan said, if big workforce cannot create the corresponding productivity.

According to the Ministry of Finance, by early May 2012, 83 state owned economic groups and general corporations, and four commercial banks had committed to cut down 13 trillion dong in costs.

Of this amount, 3 trillion dong (24.7 percent) would be saved thanks to the management cost cuts, while the other 75.3 percent would be saved by cutting down other expenses items.

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