Factories lack workers as thousands extend Tet leave

By Hong Chieu   February 10, 2022 | 05:47 pm PT
Factories lack workers as thousands extend Tet leave
Employees of a garment firm in the southern province of Long An work. Photo by VnExpress/Quynh Tran
Factories need thousands of workers to resume and expand operations with many employees yet to return after the nine-day Tet holiday that ended Feb. 6.

In Bac Giang, 72 companies have registered to recruit more than 43,000 workers through the northern province’s employment service, up 11 percent compared to the end of last year.

The shortage occurs as factories resume operations this week, but workers residing in the northern highland provinces are yet to return as they want to spend more time with their families, said Nguyen Xuan Ngoc, Deputy Manager of Bac Giang Industrial Parks Management Board.

They are expected to return after Feb. 15, he added.

For the first quarter this year, 10,000 workers are needed for firms within industrial zones to make up for those have quit and to expand production.

FDI firms in the textile and electronics sectors are reported to be the largest recruiters, post Tet.

Luxshare ICT Vietnam Ltd, the manufacturing partner of Apple, is recruiting 30,000 new workers. Other manufacturing firms, including New Wing Interconnect Technology (Bac Giang) Co. Ltd and Lens Technology Vietnam Co. Ltd, need 1,500 to 5,000 workers.

As of Tuesday, 310 of 383 companies in Bac Giang had returned operating. Around 135,000 out of 180,000 workers, nearly 73 percent, have returned to work.

In Bac Ninh, around 80 percent of workers in the electronics sector have resumed working, while the resumption is happening at a slower pace in the textile and footwear industries.

Nguyen Thi Van Ha, chairwoman of the Bac Ninh Confederation of Labor, said many workers have yet to return. Unions and enterprises have asked them to return soon, she said.

Many factories in Bac Ninh still lack workers after the province was hit badly by the Covid-19 outbreak in May 2021.

To cope with the shortage, the province advised companies to connect with job centers and expand recruiting activities to provinces with a large number of available workers, such as Ha Giang, Phu Tho, Thanh Hoa, Ninh Binh and Nghe An.

Bac Ninh has over 450,000 employees working in nearly 1,200 companies. Most of the workers come from other provinces, with locals accounting for just 25 percent of labor demand.

Higher number of returnees

In the south, the rate of workers returning is higher, but many manufacturing and tech firms are still rushing to recruit workers as foreign companies show interest in setting up or expanding their operations in Vietnam.

According to the HCMC Department of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs, as of Monday - the first working day of Lunar New Year, the rate of workers returning to work reached 94 percent compared to pre-Tet labor strength.

However, it estimated that companies need up to 75,000 additional workers to expand production. Information technology, electric and electronics are the main sectors recruiting for the additional workers, it added.

Meanwhile, the Federation of Labor and Industrial Parks Management Board in Binh Duong Province reported that 70 to 80 percent of workers at large enterprises have returned, higher than the year before.

In Dong Nai, the rate of returning workers was a high 95 percent, according to the southern province’s labor federation.

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