On 22, 24 and 31 October 2013, a series of business consultation workshops on “The roles of business and private sector in preventing corruption in Vietnam” was held in Da Nang , Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi by the Government Inspectorate (GI) and Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) in collaboration with the British Department For International Development (DFID).
Towards Transparency (TT) was actively engaged in organising and preparing for the events. In addition to bringing international speakers to share good practices from other countries, TT also delivered presentations to advocate for strengthened individual and collective action by businesses and appeal for the Government to set clear incentives in policy and practice in the public sector to encourage clean business.
Following the workshops, on 12 November 2013, the 12th Anti – Corruption Dialogue (ACD) between the Government of Vietnam and the donors and international development partners was organised in Hanoi by GI and VCCI together with the British Embassy and DFID. The dialogue, which focused on the theme of “Enhancing Business Engagement in Promoting Integrity in the Business Sector” attracted the participation of various government agencies, embassies, donors, the business community, civil society and media.
Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc emphasized at the ACD that sanctions should be strong enough to deter bribes, particularly for businesses who use bribes to create a business advantage. Mr. Phuc also recommended that companies should improve and professionalise their management activities to help counter corruption.
The research and discussions amongst stakeholders at the ACD showed growing concerns about the corruption situation in the business sector in Vietnam and yielded important recommendations:
- Expanding the scope of the existing legal framework to encompass corruption in the business and private sector
- Encouraging enterprises to establish internal compliance systems to combat corruption, in which integrity is considered a core value
- Business leaders move towards a zero-tolerance policy for corruption
- Business act collectively to promote integrity and implement business integrity programmes
Ending the conference, representatives of donors and development partners reaffirmed their commitment to continue to support and assist Vietnam Government and the business sector to tackle corruption.