Vietnam job numbers improve as coronavirus recedes

By Dat Nguyen   May 23, 2020 | 09:00 am GMT+7
Vietnam job numbers improve as coronavirus recedes
A beer club staff sprays hand sanitizer on a customer's hands in District 1, Ho Chi Minh City in May 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Huu Khoa.

Labor demand is warming up as companies resume activities after a long hiatus caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Data from online recruitment firm VietnamWorks shows that the number of vacancies on its website rose by 20 percent in the first week of May.

Its survey of 400 employers in April found 39 percent of them saying they would resume recruitment either immediately or in May.

Vuong Bao Ngoc, head of recruitment consulting at online recruitment company Viec Lam 24h, said the labor market is becoming more vibrant and her website has 1.5 million applications from job seekers.

The HCMC Youth Employment Service Center reported there are over 1,000 vacancies currently for sales and marketing employees and managers at salaries of VND5.5-15 million ($236-643) a month.

Vietnam’s labor market was mostly inactive in April due to the social distancing campaign and companies suspending business due to the Covid-19 outbreak.

As of mid-April five million workers had their hours reduced or been laid off due to the pandemic, according to the General Statistics Office. The number of companies suspending business in the first quarter was 18,600, up 26 percent year-on-year, it said.

Unemployment climbed to a five-year high, with manufacturing, retail and lodging and catering services being the most heavily impacted, it added.

But industry insiders said the labor market is now looking up as businesses start resuming operations with the virus putatively contained and Vietnam going over a month without community transmission.

LG Display Hai Phong has recently advertised for 5,000 manufacturing workers and 1,000 technicians as part of its plans to expand production after the pandemic and meet orders from foreign buyers. The company is willing to hire and train inexperienced people.

Samsung, without mentioning specific figures, said it is hiring a "large" number of skilled workers in a number of areas including machinery, electronics and information technology. It too plans to expand.

Vu Quang Thanh, deputy director of the Hanoi Centre of Employee Service (HCES), said recruitment demand in some sectors such as technology is increasing by 40-50 percent.

Companies are lowering their requirements to quickly revive their business after the coronavirus losses, he said.

Nguyen Hoang Thanh Chuong, deputy director of recruitment at recruitment firm Adecco Vietnam, said demand should surge in the second quarter since Vietnam has been successful in containing the pandemic.

There would be rising demand in the transport, logistics, consumer goods, agriculture, and food and beverages sectors following the three-week social distancing campaign, he forecast.

"The unemployment rate is set to fall as businesses resume operations."

 
 
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