State-owned groups and companies will have to declare their debts and assets, including gold, deposits, cheques, credit certificates at funds and banks from July this year if a new draft circular by the Ministry of Finance is approved.

The ministry is looking to reassess State assets in the economy.

Short or long-term investments, joint venture capital and fund deposits are also to be counted.

Public opinion on the draft is currently being sought.

The reassessment will be carried out on leased, donated, gifted fixed assets and non-owned fixed assets.

The financial assessment of incomplete fundamental construction projects will include all works the company is directly involved with and works that are finished by the company's bidder.

The value of materials, equipment, complete or semi-complete products in stock, products or goods being transferred or for sale, and other business expenditures will have to be taken into account.

Ministries and provincial People's Committees will name the companies that will need to abide by the circular. The short listed companies' book value must vary considerably from their stated market value, while they must also have considerable assets.

The financial reassessment and audit of State debt-ridden companies is seen as urgent. The State Auditor conducted 135 audits in 35 provinces and 20 ministries and 23 economic groups and many corporations and financial institutions in 2008. Their total debt reached 181 trillion VND (8.83 billion USD). Test audit results of 224 member units of 16 groups showed that nearly 10 percent of the companies were in the red.

The State Audit of Vietnam this year plans to launch what it said would be its biggest audit ever of state conglomerates, corporations and commercial banks. They include 27 state conglomerates, corporations and banks, as well as 39 large-scale projects such as the Can Tho cable-stayed bridge in the Cuu Long ( Mekong ) Delta and Dung Quat Oil Refinery in Quang Ngai province.

State and semi-State utilities Electricity of Vietnam Group (EVN), Vietnam Shipbuilding Industry Group (Vinashin), Vietnam National Coal and Mineral Industries Group (Vinacomin), Housing and Urban Development Holdings (HUD), Joint Stock Commercial Bank for Foreign Trade of Vietnam (Vietcombank) and Vietnam Joint Stock Commercial Bank for Industry and Trade (VietinBank) are on the list to be vetted./.