VietNamNet Bridge – Chinese contractors have been trying every possible way to refuse Vietnamese laborers, while bringing Chinese unskilled workers to Vietnam to undertake simple jobs.
The Hai Phong Thermopower Plant project in Tam Hung commune of Thuy Nguyen District in the port city of Hai Phong was kicked off in November 2005. In order to make sure that the project can be completed as initially scheduled, the EPC (engineering, purchasing, construction) Japanese and Chinese contractors need 2000-3000 regular workers.
Foreign unskilled laborers undertake the jobs reserved for Vietnamese
In principle, the thermopower plant project would create tens of thousand of local jobs. However, things are quite different in reality. According to Do Van Hai, Administration Director of the Hai Phong Thermopower Company, said that at some moments, there were 2000 Chinese laborers working on the site. Meanwhile, at present, nearly 1300 Chinese laborers are working on the site of the factory No. 2.
Meanwhile, the report of the company to the Thuy Nguyen district’s police showed that the figure is 1500 Chinese workers. These workers have been granted the work permits for one year. However, the inspections have found a lot of Chinese unskilled workers who did not have identity papers, who were expelled. Meanwhile, no one can give accurate figures.
Since the majority of workers on the construction site are Chinese, the minority Vietnamese workers there have been suffering from the discriminatory treatment.
Hoang Van T in Thuy Nguyen district said that he and other Vietnamese workers are paid 100,000 dong per day. Meanwhile, Chinese workers get higher wages for the same kinds of works.
A Vietnamese security guard at the My Son apartment block said that he received 1.5 million dong a month from Chinese contractors, with no allowance. Meanwhile, the contractors have recently brought a Chinese security guard who is paid 10 million dong, or 7 times higher than Son’s income.
Local authorities powerless?
According to the Hai Phong Department of Labor, War Invalids and Social Affairs, about 200 domestic and foreign enterprises are using foreign workers.
By the end of May 2012, 2206 foreign laborers had got work permits, 87 percent of whom are Chinese. After one year, when the work permits get expired, employers have to go to management agencies to report the labor force situation or extend the work permits. However, very few employers strictly follow the procedures, and many of them do not give back the work permits.
“The number of foreign workers has been changing regularly. Meanwhile, state management agencies do not know if they are in Vietnam or leave for China,” said the representative from the city’s laor department.
Also according to the representative, the Vietnamese side only has the function of supervising the speed and the quality of the project implementation, while it does not have the right to intervene the contractors’ decision on the labor force and wages.
He went on to say that Chinese contractors always ignore the advices by Vietnamese investors on recruiting Vietnamese workers. They still keep using Chinese workers, saying that Chinese have better skills and qualifications.
The Chinese contractors have also reasoned the language barrier between them and Vietnamese workers and bad discipline of Vietnamese workers.
However, in fact, an executive of the Hai Phong Thermopower plant has affirmed that a lot of Chinese workers are illiterate, and they can only sign into the payroll to get wages.
Nguyen Quang Hao, Head of the Ben Rung Police Station, said there are 1600 Chinese people residing in two communes of Ngu Lao and Tam Hung. Most of them live on the houses set up by the contractors, while the other 300-400 workers live on rent rooms.
Source: Dat Viet