The Hanoitimes - The ministry has been requested to downsize its wholly-owned companies to 17 by end-2020.
Vietnam’s Ministry of National Defense will step up the equitization and divestment drive of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) under its umbrella to downsize its SOE portfolio to 17 by 2020 from 88, an official has said.
The ministry will sell shares in 29 wholly-owned companies until 2020 after completing equitization of 32 out of 38 firms scheduled for the 2013-2015 period, VnExpress cited Nguyen Van Duc, head of the ministry’s Propaganda Department, as saying at a press meeting on October 9.
Corporation 36 is among military-run SOEs that have undergone equitization
Besides, the ministry has sold its entire holdings in 10 joint stock companies and is unloading shares in the remaining 11, Duc informed.
According to a prime minister-approved plan for 2020, the ministry will retain a 100% stake in 17 companies. It will have to equitize 29 companies that are dedicated to commerce, construction and service operations, divest stakes in 20 joint stock companies and consolidate other small ones.
The ministry has been under fire for years for sticking to its dual missions: national defense and carrying out economic activities. A protest wave took place last year when the ministry was blamed for renting a large reserve land plot adjacent to Tan Son Nhat International Airport to a golf course operator while the already overloaded airport was under great pressure to get expanded. The ministry then said it will hand over the idle land for the upgrade of the airport when needed.
A number of military officials have raised voice to defend that duality, arguing that the army is not assigned to implement purely economic activities, but a combination of economic and defense purposes is needed to fulfill its role.