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Enterprises need to adjust talent development strategy to harness EVFTA: experts
By Truc Diem
Tuesday,  Sep 17, 2019,18:27 (GMT+7)

Enterprises need to adjust talent development strategy to harness EVFTA: experts

By Truc Diem

Employees work at a plant of Viettien Garment Company. Vietnamese businesses are expected to face harsh competition for highly skilled labor - PHOTO: THANH HOA

HANOI - Opportunities for Vietnamese companies from the EU-Vietnam free trade agreement (FTA) are significant, provided that employers adjust their current talent development strategy, experts noted.

Speaking at the workshop "EU–Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA): Opportunities and Challenges for Vietnamese Workforce," experts said companies should have the right workforce to achieve their full potential and maximize opportunities.

Manpower Group Vietnam, in collaboration with Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), hosted the seminar today, September 17, to increase awareness among enterprises on the opportunities and challenges presented by the EVFTA's impact on the Vietnamese workforce.

The experts at the event also discussed the implications of Vietnam’s revised Labor Code in the context of increased international integration and the 4th Industrial Revolution. 

By eliminating up to 99% of export tariffs, the EVFTA will provide Vietnamese companies with competitive prices when they export goods to European markets. This is expected to bring tens of thousands of new job opportunities per year and increase income for the Vietnamese workforce.

The greatest impact will be recorded among manufacturing industries such as textiles, footwear, furniture and seafood.

However, Vietnamese businesses are expected to face harsh competition for highly skilled labor to meet the increasingly stringent quality requirements applied to commodities and services entering the European market.

EVFTA is considered a new-generation FTA as one of its aims is to enforce labor and environmental standards.

Vietnam and the European Union have agreed on a procedure to recognize and assist with four basic labor conventions under the ILO 1998 Declaration: freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining; the elimination of all forms of forced or compulsory labor; the effective abolition of child labor; and the elimination of discrimination with respect to employment and occupation.

These commitments compel the Vietnamese Government to review policies and revise the Labor Code with appropriate adjustments. It opens up opportunities as well as challenges for enterprises as they have to change to meet the commitments.

However, by complying with these commitments, Vietnam is also being given an opportunity to develop a sustainable and well-balanced labor market, which provides long-term benefits to both local workers and enterprises.

“To achieve business growth in the context of increased international integration, talent development must be the first priority of enterprises,” according to Simon Matthews, country manager of Manpower Group Vietnam who is also responsible for the group's business in Thailand and the Middle East. “To be successful, organizations must have the right talent strategy, where the development of internal employees plays an important role.”

According to “Humans Wanted, Robots Need You,” a global research study compiled by Manpower Group, up to 84% of companies worldwide will invest in training their employees in 2020.

During the workshop, Matthews also shared practical guidance for employers to develop future talent using the Build, Buy, Borrow and Bridge strategy to ensure an adequate supply of workers despite the current shortage.

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