Jointly held by the Ministries of Planning and Investment and Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs, the event focused on multi-dimensional views of labour status in foreign-invested enterprises.
Addressing the workshop, Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment Vu Dai Thang stressed the need to review and evaluate the overall situation of labour in the FDI sector in recent time, thus rolling out appropriate and breakthrough solutions to better the quality of human resources working in FDI firms.
This aims to optimise FDI flows which tend to go to Asian countries, including Vietnam, he said.
Dr. Le Van Hung from the Vietnam Institute of Economics highlighted that FDI plays an important role in the productivity growth of countries that receive investment as it helps shift the structure of labour from the low-productivity industries to those with higher productivity.
In addition, investment recipients expect that FDI enterprises with their advantages of technology, market and management, will have higher labour productivity than domestic firms, he noted.
Linkages between domestic and FDI firms promote the transfer of advanced technologies, he said, adding that the presence of FDI companies raise competition pressure, forcing domestic businesses to improve their ability and competitiveness.
Hung said that Vietnam's labour productivity growth has improved gradually, reaching 5.5% per year in the 2014 - 2016.
Among economic sectors, the FDI sector always has the highest absolute labour productivity because it concentrates mainly on processing industry, while the domestic firms majorly operate in agricultural and unofficial fields, which have low absolute labour productivity.
However, Thang also pointed out shortcomings in the FDI sector, saying that foreign firms have yet to establish close links with Vietnamese peers to jointly participate in value chains and promote the development of support industry in Vietnam.
The transfer of technology and management experience has not been as expected, he noted, adding that there are phenomena of transfer pricing, tax evasion or violations of regulations on environmental protection.
To improve the efficiency of labour productivity in FDI firms, Vietnam needs to pay attention to the quality of FDI flows instead of quantity, Hung said.
FDI attraction should be closely linked with the national development strategy, with priority given to a number of sectors and areas with comparative advantages by region, especially those operating in deep-processing, high technology and new energy.
Vice Chairman of the Bac Ninh provincial People’s Committee Nguyen Van Phong emphasised the need to take measures to support labourers working in FDI firms.
Meanwhile, Vice Director of the Department of Labour, Invalid and Social Affairs of Dong Nai province Pham Van Cong recommended the pilot formation of ecological industrial parks, which will attract only FDI and domestic firms operating in the same field and those have linking with and supporting each other.
“For example, industrial parks for coffee and rubber processing enterprises could be formed in the Central Highlands, while those for processing products related to fruit and rice should be built in the Mekong Delta region”, Hung said.