Per Ronnås & Bhargavi Ramamurthy (eds)
The private small-scale manufacturing sector has emerged as a key actor in the development of the Vietnamese economy since the launching of market-oriented reforms (doi moi) in the late 1980s. Yet little has been known about the nature and dynamics of this sector during this crucial period.
The lack of hard data on these developments is addressed in the present study, which draws on a comprehensive survey in 1991 of some 1,000 non-state manufacturing enterprises, a repeat survey in 1997 of some 400 of the same enterprises and a parallel survey in the same year of a further 500 enterprises not previously surveyed. The result is an in-depth analysis of the development and transformation of the private manufacturing sector in Vietnam during the first decade of doi moi.
The study describes the considerable consolidation seen in this sector in the past decade in terms of size, capital intensity and labor productivity, and in this regard it notes that this process has been accompanied by a sharp reduction in regional differences. This transformation has taken place through two parallel processes: first, through the appearance of new enterprises that are fundamentally different from previously established enterprises and, second, through growth and transformation of the existing enterprises. Following a comprehensive analysis of the characteristics of the enterprises in 1997, these two processes are analyzed in detail, while the last part of the book is devoted to separate analysis of the ‘losers’ and the ‘winners’.