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ANNUAL VIETNAM BUSINESS FORUM 2015 Hanoi, December 1, 2015

The Working Group’s presentation focused on Decree 73 and issues relating to technical and vocational education and training (TVET).

Decree 73

-   New legislation appears more complicated than the past. Three licences are now required, after granting of the investment license and many sub licenses. The Ministry of Education and Training (MoET) should separately consider legal regulations for different types of education.

- Decree 73 manages the operations of foreign-invested higher education institutions and circulars to guide implementation of this decree, as well as relevant regulations, should be enacted within a year and not up to five years like before.

-   Legal procedures for re-investment projects: Expansion for existing projects should be different to those for newly established projects to create favorable conditions for successful investors. It is unfair when the legal procedures for granting licenses for new investment projects are the same as the legal procedures of the re-investment projects.

-   Lack of a legal framework for extension of educational institution operations: If the duration of operations in the new licence is less than 20 years, it should not require construction of its own buildings.

-   There is inconsistency between legislation bodies and law enforcement agencies. The decree should clearly state which documents should be submitted and when for issuance of establishment and operation licenses.

 

Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET)

Effective TVET institutions lay the foundation for economic growth and to achieve this, required competencies needed by industry must be known and a curriculum developed to produce such graduates.

-   Meeting industry needs: To reduce the mismatch of skills demand and supply, TVET institutions must improve training programs by analyzing industry needs. Colleges should be more involved in identifying industry needs to meet local demand and have autonomy to link more closely with industry.

-   Building capacity of TVET Institutions: Organization and management, teacher and curriculum development must be raised and numerous initiatives are already underway including thefollowing: The Vietnamese Skills for Employment Project from Canada; Vietnamese – German Programme Reform of TVET in Viet Nam; The Japan International Cooperation Agency initiatives; The Higher Engineering Education Alliance Program from the USA. The Working Group recommends the Government engage in such initiatives to have a coordinated approach to building TVET institutions’ capacity. The Vietnam Development Partnership Forum could also help with this coordination work.

-   Attracting students to TVET institutions: High school students often want to go directly into university and a single articulation system for Vietnamese education would make TVETs more attractive. The Government should continue work on a National Qualifications Framework to have TVET institution studies officially recognized.

 

Responses from the Ministry of Education and Training (MOET) - Mr. Bui Van Ga, Deputy Minister

The MoET agrees with the Working Group that personnel training is key to achieving sustainable development breakthroughs in Vietnam.

In recent years, the MoET has launched policies pushing for innovation in education and training to raise training quality. Currently, it is applying the national framework consistent with the ASEAN reference framework, submitted to the Prime Minister for consideration and approval for integration of ASEAN Economic Community next year.

Constrains related to Decree 73:

-   Decree 73 requires three steps to establish training institutions with foreign investment compared to two previously. Because investment certificates include other activities outside education and training, monitoring educational and training operating conditions have encountered difficulties. As a result, MoET has adjusted policies to attract investors and protect students’ interests. Based on Working Group recommendations, MoET will advise the Government to further consider simplifying the administration process.

-   Administrative files to establish foreign education and training institutions: Each step requires different levels of details. MoET views Working Group recommendations requiring investors to sign contracts with teaching and managing staff prior to school operation as leading to cost impacts on investors. MoET will review and report to the Government for a more appropriate provision of timelines for investors to sign labor contracts with teaching and management staff to reduce costs as well as ensure the quality of the human resource.

-   Proportion of Vietnamese students allowed to enroll in international programs and schools with foreign investment: MoET will consider Working Group recommendations and report to the Government to consider expanding quotas to attract more Vietnamese students to such schools. However, this does not fall under MoET’s jurisdiction.

-   Recommendation to continue pilot training programs in foreign languages: Because pilot programs need time and after each stage require specific evaluations, proposals will need to be reviewed and processed based on specific cases.

Response from Ministry of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs - Mr. Doan Mau Diep, Deputy Minister

The Ministry of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs (MoLISA) highly values recommendations on vocational training and will coordinate among government departments and related agencies such as MoET, MoLISA, businesses and the community of vocational colleges. Relating to quality improvements to vocational institutions, the Government will listen to foreign investor community recommendations to connect and find the best approach. To attract students to vocational institutions, MoLISA has made efforts, such as working with the General Department of Statistics and MPI to publish quarterly newsletters labor market updates and addressing the need for vocational training sectors. To address human resources not meeting hiring needs of businesses, MoLISA needs collaboration from MoET as well as Government interventions and will listen to foreign investor community feedback.