Step by step overcoming the pandemic, the small and medium enterprises (hereinafter referred to as the “SMEs”) have been getting hit hardest and are in desperate need of assistance from the State to promptly return to the “new normal”, and develop the plan for both containing the pandemic while concentrating the business and production.

In response to these requests, the Government issued Decree No. 80/2021/ND-CP on regulating and guiding some articles of the Law on the provision of assistance for SMEs (“Decree 80”) which came into force on 15 October 2021.

1. The support packages for SMEs to prioritize female employees

Decree 80, which emphasizes the contribution of women to the development of the economy and society, provides preferential treatment in the assistance of counseling, development of human resources for the women-owned SMEs and SMEs that has at least 50% female employment if it has fewer than 100 employees, at least 30% female employment if it has at least 100 employees, in the assistance of counseling, development of human resources.

2. The material support packages

The SMEs shall be supported according to the following contents of Decree 80:

a. Technology assistance

Decree 81 sets the level of up to 50% reimbursement for SMEs of:

  • the value of the advisory contract for digitalization of the enterprise and conversion of business model;
  • the cost of leasing, buying solutions for digitalization for automation, improvement of efficiency and conversion of business model;
  •  the value of the advisory contract for the establishment of intellectual property rights; management and development of products and services with protected intellectual property rights
  • the value of the advisory contract for technology transfer 

Noted that the assistance level shall not exceed (i) VND 20 million/ a year/micro-enterprise, (ii) VND 50 million/a year/small enterprise, (iii) VND 100 million/a year/medium enterprise. This assistance is increased greatly compared to the old regulations (no more than VND 5 million).

b. Information assistance

According to the latest regulation, the SMEs freely access the information on SMEs Assistance Portal and the websites of other government agencies including the information about plans, programs in connection to the assistance for enterprises, bussines guidelines and other information requested by the SMEs.

c. Counseling

The SMEs will receive specialized counseling in various fields such as personnel, finance, manufacturing, sale, market, internal administration, and other content relevant to their business operation.

d. Assistance in the development of human resources

The direct training of SMEs will be sponsored 100% of the total cost of a training course in entrepreneurship and up to 70% cost of a training course in business administration for SMEs;

Adapting to the current pandemic situation, online training programs will also be included in the assistance area. In particular, access and participation will be free for lectures existing on the online training systems of the Ministry and other similar interactive online training.

e. Subsidized interest rate from the national budget

SMEs participating in industry clusters, value chains will be granted the rate of 2% a year when taking loans from credit institutions to execute their business plans or projects.

Note that each enterprise shall only subsidize interest rates for one project in each period.

3. Assistance procedures

In order to receive the above-mentioned support packages, SMEs shall apply two options, whether directly or online, to the assisting organization.