Head of NA Committee for Finance and Budget Nguyen Duc Hai speaks at the event (Photo: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – A conference was held in Hanoi on October 19 to collect ideas on the draft Law on Support to Small and Medium-sized Enterprises that will be debated during the 14th National Assembly’s second session starting from October 20.

Speaking at the event, jointly held by the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), MPI Deputy Minister Dang Huy Dong noted that small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) form the backbone of the economy.

SMEs currently account for more than 97 percent of total firms, employing over 50 percent of the country’s workforce and making up 40 percent of GDP, he said.

However, he held that despite the great contribution, SMEs are facing many difficulties and obstacles in accessing resources such as credit, land for production and market.

The bill aims to synchronize support policies and programmes for SMEs to fit the economic targets and orientations of the country as well as strengths of specific localities and resources for each period, he said.

It also creates a legal framework for mobilising the engagement of the private sector as well as domestic and international organisations in the Government’s efforts in backing SMEs, while tackling problems in policies and implementation of supports for SMEs.

Le Van Khuong, head of the Office for SMEs under the Business Development Department, revealed that the bill comprises six chapters and 45 articles focusing on basic supports for SMEs, including regulations in entering and retreating from the market, accessing finance and credit, technology, production ground, market expansion and promotion, public purchase, and training.

The support will be offered through mechanisms and policies as well as favourable conditions for intermediary organisation to provide assistance services for SMEs. The firms will be aided in business model transformation, creative renovation and joining production chains.

Khuong added that the bill is suitable with Vietnam’s commitments to the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which is expected to create more jobs from the private sector, contributing to helping Vietnam reach the target of one million firms in 2020.

Meanwhile, Gloria Steele, USAID Vice Director for Asia, asserted that the creation of a dynamic environment for SMEs is necessary, facilitating the development of Vietnam , one of the fastest growing economies in Asia.

The USAID will accompany Vietnam in designing policies to support SMEs, she pledged.-VNA