VietNamNet Bridge – As anticipated, the number of unemployed workers has been increasing rapidly amid the economic downturn. Even the people, who were once high income earners, now also have to queue up to register their unemployment.
Quoc Viet was once an officer of a construction company and he could earn 60 million dong a month. However, he has become unemployed after the company tried to lay off workers to cut down expenses. 30 percent of the labor force has been cut, after 40 percent of the labor force was cut in 2011.
Viet, who was seen filling the form for unemployment registration at the HCM City Job Center in HCM City on February 17 morning, said that he came there three times already, but he still could not fulfill the procedures.
One year ago, his basic wage was 10 million dong a month. And if counting on commissions and allowances, his income was as high as 60 million dong. Viet said he tried to fulfill necessary procedures to be able to enjoy the unemployment benefit. He fears that he would have to stay redundant for a long time in the conditions of scanty money. In such circumstance, the money from unemployment insurance would help much.
Under the current regulations, the dole would be equal to 60 percent of the basic wages. This means that Viet would receive 6 million dong a month.
Nga, an officer of a chemical company in district 12, also said that she once earned 10 million dong a month, not including allowances. However, as she has become redundant, she would have to live on the dole and have to cut down expenses.
Nga said she needs to find a better job which can bring the income of more than 10 million dong a month. However, it is very difficult to find a new job at this moment, when companies are in big difficulties and do not want to employ more workers.
Observers have noted that the number of high income earners, who had the high monthly incomes of 10 million dong and higher, and now make unemployment registration, is now by far higher than that of the previous years.
Nguyen Cao Thang, Deputy Director of the HCM City Job Center, has also confirmed that the number of workers registering unemployment has increased sharply after the Tet holiday.
He said that about 400 people come to the center to make unemployment registration every day. Meanwhile, in previous months, the center received only 9000 people a month.
He also said that the number of registrations has been increasing since mid 2011, sometimes reaching 13,000 a month, and that not only low income earners, but the senior officers with the monthly income of tens of millions of dong, have also come to declare their unemployment status. They are from the sectors which were once very hot in the national economy, such as real estate market, securities and construction.
However, he said that some people have wrong understanding about the unemployment benefits they can get. The people, who have the monthly income of 20 million dong a month, may think that they would get 12 million dong a month (60 percent of the salary).
However, in fact, the Social Insurance Law stipulates that the maximum pay for unemployment insurance is equal to 20 times of the monthly minimum salary (830,000 dong). Therefore, even if workers have the income of 50 million dong, the income for calculating unemployment insurance would be 16.6 million dong only. In other words, the highest possible benefit would be 9.96 million dong.
He has affirmed that some people have enjoyed the highest benefit of 9.96 million dong since last November.