SME and Entrepreneurship Policy in Viet Nam

image of SME and Entrepreneurship Policy in Viet Nam

This publication presents the findings of the OECD review of SME and Entrepreneurship Policy in Viet Nam. It offers an in-depth examination of the performance of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and entrepreneurship in Viet Nam, the quality of the business environment, and national policies in support of new and small businesses. The report shows that Viet Nam is one of the most globally integrated economies in the world, building its solid growth performance on the attraction of foreign direct investments and export promotion. Viet Nam’s business environment has considerably improved in recent years, although important reforms are still needed in certain policy areas. Viet Nam's SMEs contribute to national employment and national GDP proportionally less than in the OECD area, although official statistics do not take into consideration the large informal sector that mostly consists of self-employed people and micro-enterprises. Viet Nam’s SME and entrepreneurship policies are relatively new, dating back to the early 2000s. In this respect, the 2018 SME Support Law is an important milestone which may help address some of the challenges that are holding back the development of a more vigorous domestic enterprise sector. Key policy priorities in this regard, building better business linkages between multinationals and local enterprises and stronger business development services, are the subjects of two thematic chapters of the report.


SME and entrepreneurship support programmes in Viet Nam

This chapter describes and assesses national programmes supporting SMEs and entrepreneurship in Viet Nam in the areas of access to finance, innovation, internationalisation, public procurement, workforce skills, entrepreneurship education and women’s entrepreneurship. SME financing programmes, notably the SME Development Fund and the Credit Guarantee Fund, feature low take-up, calling for operational adjustments in their design and implementation. Innovation is a common policy target, but it has mostly focused on R&D support and technology promotion, while building innovation capabilities at the firm level has been overlooked. In the area of export policy, Viet Nam’s recent improvements in trade facilitation should be complemented with programmes improving the export-readiness of SMEs and their capacity to engage in e-commerce. Entrepreneurship education is starting to move its first steps in higher education, while there is still little going on at the primary and secondary level of education. Finally, support for women’s entrepreneurship has recently been strengthened, but it could be better mainstreamed by ensuring that women are adequately represented in all government SME and entrepreneurship programmes.


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