Spotlight on labour leasing services

January 13, 2011 | 19:00
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There are currently contrasting viewpoints regarding labour leasing services, a relatively nascent industry in Vietnam.

Advocates claim that state regulations on employment services in Clause 18 of the Labour Code did not cover labour leasing while other regulations on labour contracts in Clause 30 did not accept the legitimacy of such services.

Meanwhile, the critics claim Clause 18 in the Labour Code does cover labour leasing services, which are currently handled by employment service firms and are fairly popular. They also insist that the Labour Code and relevant guiding documents did not forbid the service.

Head of the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs (MoLISA)’s Legislation Department, Dang Duc San said the current Labour Code was short of concrete regulations overseeing the labour leasing business.

General director of Amica Corporation, a business development solutions provider, Trinh Dinh Long said the [labour leasing] service was very useful in a burgeoning labour market development because it would help employers seek sufficient workers in the least amount of time.

Currently, many businesses missed out contracts as they could not seek enough labourers for contract completion. Through leasing labourers, they would quickly acquire the labourers they need at a lower cost compared to new recruitment and retraining.

In Vietnam, labour leasing companies employ and train labourers; they then sign contracts with clients to lease them out. The service first emerged in the country in 2001.

The problem was neither the firms procuring the labourers nor the labour leasers accept paying for workers' health and social insurance.

Workers, who are contracted out to companies by the labour services, also risked missing out on benefit entitlements and being underpaid.

This would, to some extent, distort the labour market and harm labourers’ interests.

Notwithstanding, Dr. Nguyen Xuan Thu from Hanoi Law University said labour leasing was still important and this should be considered a conditional business. Accordingly, only companies which satisfy certain governmental requirements and are licenced by MoLISA would perform the service. Thu also said it was necessary to get the labourers’ consent before doing the work.

However, San said the authority was yet to introduce concrete adjustments on labour leasing.

“In the short-term, maybe only some particular fields will be allowed to perform the service through short-term labour contracts,” he said.

By Phan Long

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