Last update 11/2/2010 2:00:00 PM (GMT+7)

Responsibility for Vinashin’s debt must be clarified

VietNamNet Bridge – "Based on the Constitution and the Law on National Assembly (NA) Organisation, I would like to ask the NA Standing Committee to vote on the establishment of a provisional committee to investigate the responsibility of the cabinet over the Vinashin case,” proposed deputy Nguyen Minh Thuyet.

Troubled shipbuilding group to be restructured for survival


Vice Chair of the NA’s Committee for Culture, Education, Youth and Children Nguyen Minh Thuyet.

“At the end of the ongoing NA session, the NA will hold a vote of confidence to the Prime Minister and the related cabinet members. To facilitate the provisional committee’s activities, I ask the NA to temporarily suspend the officials is question,” Thuyet said.

His proposal at the NA meeting this morning, November 1, was supported by many deputies like Le Van Cuong, Pham Thi Loan and Huynh Ngoc Dang. Many deputies pointed out the NA’s “joint” responsibility for the Vinashin case.

“The Vietnam Shipbuilding Industry Group (Vinashin) has effectively collapsed, though we have used more gentle words to describe its situation,” said Thuyet, Vice Chair of the NA’s Committee for Culture, Education, Youth and Children. 

According to Thuyet, the collapse of Vinashin has put the debt of nearly 100 trillion dong on the shoulders of Vietnamese people. The debt which, according to him, a small province with an annual revenue of 1 trillion dong would need a century to pay, that is, if it didn’t spend a penny in the meantime.. The debt means that many provinces – particularly poor provinces – don’t have money to build roads, bridges, schools and hospitals.

Thuyet questioned the responsibility of Vinashin officials, for the group’s collapse?

He said that cabinet members must seriously review their responsibility and admit their mistakes before the NA, the representative body of the people.

He recalled a business case from many years ago, with losses of 100 billion dong, when a Minister had to resign and two Deputy Ministers had to appear at court. The Vinashin case, he said, is similar but the loss is 1000 times higher.

The NA’s Legal Committee said that the Vinashin case seemed to be covered up, but who and how the case was covered up, for what purpose and what the consequences will be, are not made clear. “If the NA can’t make this clear, it means that it fails to fulfill its responsibility to the Party and the people,” Thuyet said.

Deputy Le Van Cuong from Thanh Hoa province confirmed that the Vinashin case must be solved thoroughly at this NA session. He estimated that each Vietnamese has to pay 1.5 million dong of debt for Vinashin.

Deputy Huynh Ngoc Dang from Binh Duong province said that it is unconvincing to say that Vinashin is one of the first State-owned groups and its failure was partly because of the lack of adequate legal frameworks.

Deputy Pham Thi Loan from Hanoi said that the PM is directly managing 19 groups and corporations and questioned why he had to cover for all of them?

Loan also said that problems at Vinashin were detected very early on but it was not investigated or audited and it is unfair to blame only Vinashin’s officials.

Loan asked who allowed Vinashin to borrow up to 15 percent over its chartered capital, to issue bonds and why its violations were not discovered by 11 inspection teams. The NA added Vinashin to the list of enterprises under special supervisory but the government didn’t agree and told the inspectors not to investigate it. As a result, state auditors couldn’t do their job at Vinashin. Who will take responsibility for thisy, she asked.

Le Nhung