The conference on Vietnam Lao labor cooperation was co-chaired by Deputy Minister of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs of Vietnam, Mrs. Nguyen Thanh Hoa and Mrs. Baykham Khattiya, Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Welfare of Laos. The meeting was attended by delegates from the Ministry of Planning and Investment of Vietnam, a number of agencies in local areas near Vietnam Lao border, Association of Vietnam Investors in Laos, and a number of service enterprises sending Vietnamese labors to work in Laos.
In recent years, with the economic development of Laos and relations of comprehensive cooperation between the two countries, the number of Vietnamese employees working in Laos is increasing in quantity with many different forms. According to an incomplete statistics, there are about 13,500 Vietnamese employees working in Laos, mainly following the joint investment projects, projects on contracting works and collaborative projects between bordering localities. Many of these labors are high-skilled ones.
According to the Association of Vietnam Investors in Laos (AVIL), more than 13 thousand of Vietnamese employees are currently working in Laos. For example, Hoang Anh Gia Lai Group has up to 6,900 employees, Rubber Corporation has nearly 1,000 labors, Song Da Group has about 600 ones ... With strong development of the cooperation and investment in Laos, the demand of using Vietnam labors in Laos in the coming time is very large. It is expected that by 2015 the total number of Vietnamese employees working in Laos will exceed 20,000.
Report of Vietnam enterprises investing in Laos also shows that the policy on Vietnam labor in Laos is guaranteed and motivated for employees to complete assigned tasks. In addition to wage regime, Vietnamese workers in Laos are entitled to allowances and remote-country support. Thus, the average income for Vietnam unskilled workers in Laos reached 250 USD /month, while technical employees' income is about 500 USD /month. In addition, employees are also fully implemented the regime of social insurance, health insurance, unemployment insurance, and vacation holidays modes, prescribed by Vietnam and Laos.
The presence of Vietnam labors in Laos helps to solve the lack of labor, especially in fields of energy, basic infrastructure, transport, harvest and services, particularly in major works and projects. However, beside a number of Vietnamese employees working in Laos, according to official channels, there are a significant number of employees working freely in Laos in unofficial channel. They are labors of provinces bordering with Laos such as Nghe An and Ha Tinh. Nghe An especially has common border with three provinces: Xiengkhuang, Bolukhamxay, and Huaphanh of Laos with the length of 419 km. As reported by the Department of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs of Nghe An, there are more than 50 enterprises operating import and export business and investment in Laos. They are working in fields of: Mineral exploitation, processing and trading timber, wine production, steel production and sales, logging, plantation, tourism, trading small vans, agribusiness, consumer commodity ... with a total investment value of more than US$ 70 million.
In recent years, the average annual number of Nghe An employee goes to work in Laos ranging from 9000 to 10000. Vietnam companies carry about 4000-5000 in Vietnam enterprises’ projects. The number of self-employed workers is from 5000 to 6000 working in the fields of construction, mining, agriculture, small business and other fields. The average income of the employees is about VND7-8 million/ month. However, the figure of workers having stable jobs accounts only about 30%, while the remaining number of employees works seasonally. Nghe An labors working in Laos strictly observe the basic laws of that country, contributing to economic - social development of the provinces, simultaneously, contributing to strengthening the friendly relations of the two countries, Vietnam and Laos.
At the meeting, the Ministry of Labor and other relevant authorities of two countries also exchanged information and discussed the mechanism of general information and communication, business connections, using flexible mechanisms and policies to support and better the management of labor in both countries. Deputy Minister Nguyen Thanh Hoa said, traditionally, Vietnam and Laos are close neighbors having similar cultures, customs and having long-lasting relationships. These are favorable conditions for the two countries to positively exchange as well as promote cooperation between the two ministries in fields of labor, employment, vocational training, training staff... Deputy Minister Nguyen Thanh Hoa hopes that in the process of implementing the Agreement on labor. Relevant agencies will increasingly care about the preparation of Laos in human resources to serve investment businesses of Vietnam in Laos. Simultaneously, Vietnam enterprises will also concern about the cooperation, training support to develop the quality of human resources for Laos.