Operation at Pouyuen Vietnam Company. Photo: Nam Duong
Production gradually stabilized
According to Hua Quoc Hung, Head of the Management Board of HCM City Export Processing Zone and Industrial Park Authority (HEPZA), 1,355 out of 1,412 enterprises have resumed their operations with about 230,000 employees.
Enterprises have paid attention to increasing capital, expanding production, and gradually adapting safely, flexibly, and effectively controlling the Covid-19 pandemic.
The rate of employees returning to work of many enterprises hits 100%, and factories have expedited operation at full capacity.
Currently, about 45,000 workers of the high-tech park have resumed work.
According to Nguyen Anh Thi, Head of the Management Board of HCM City High-tech Park, the businesses in the park are expected to restore 100% of their operation by the end of November. The board will also focus on safely adapting and gradually recovering socio-economic development, including paying attention to large enterprises such as Intel, Samsung and Nidec.
Businesses have reopened production and received new orders after a stable month; workers have returned to the city to work, and the pandemic prevention and control has been strictly implemented, especially the effective application of criteria for pandemic prevention in line with the businesses’ operation, Do Phuoc Tong, Chairman of the Board of Members of Duy Khanh Mechanical Company, said.
However, some enterprises’ factories in the Export Processing Zone and Industrial Park, and the High-tech Park have seen new Covid-19 infections. For example, 17 Export Processing Zones and Industrial Parks of the city have recorded new infections.
The number of those has increased from 50 to 70 per day and some days about 100 cases. As of October 1, more than 2,800 infections have been recorded at factories. More than 770 infections in the High-tech Park have been recorded. The number of infections in enterprises has saw a continuous increase in the past three weeks.
A representative of Vietnam UB Company (in Hiep Phuoc Industrial Park, Nha Be) said that to prepare to resume production, the company’s health department has tested all workers, and only allowed those who have had two doses of vaccine to work. The company’s factory is continuously disinfected; customers who have a negative result will be allowed to go to the company. The company also maintains testing of at least 30% of employees and periodical tests for 100% of high-risk groups. The Company has strictly applied measures for disease control.
Preventing disease outbreaks
The representative of Pouyuen Vietnam Co., Ltd (Binh Tan Industrial Park) said that 38,000 or 70% of workers have returned to work when the company resumed operations on October 6. The company conducted rapid antigen testing five times for nearly 40,000 workers.
In addition, the company also organizes periodical rapid antigen testing for high-risk workers every Tuesday. However, like many other companies, a large number of the company’s workers have voiced concerns about the infection.
According to Chanh Phuong, Vice Chairman of HCM City Fine Arts and Woodworking Association, after a month of loosening social-distancing measures, many infections have been detected via screening and periodic testing.
However, businesses, workers and localities have responded to the situation. Currently, many units still apply isolation areas for employees at factories, avoiding spreading the disease to their relatives and neighbors. Many companies have arranged treatments for infections.
Currently, HEPZA has worked with the Data Center of Vietnam National University to build labor management software in 17 industrial zones, including giving priority to the implementation of information data of each enterprise and the residence of employees. If an infection arises, the factory will notify on this software to easily control and transfer information about the infection to the competent authorities.
The High-tech Park has put into operation temporary isolation facilities for asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic cases with a scale of 100 beds. The enterprises in the Park have arranged temporary isolation areas, creating the initiative for them to safely adapt to the pandemic.
In the long term, many businesses expect the government to support the construction of accommodation for workers and social housing, contributing to safe production and adaptation to Covid-19 prevention and control. Chairman of Thu Duc City People’s Committee Hoang Tung said that Thu Duc city has now started construction of a worker accommodation area in Cat Lai industrial park, reviewed vacant land in the area, and coordinated with the Parks and Zones to build accommodation areas to serve the needs of workers in the near future.
Nguyen Van Cam, General Director of Uyen Phat Production and Trading Co., Ltd. said that in this “new normal” production period, the company has recorded new infections every week, most of them are workers living in accommodation. The company hopes to build accommodation for workers but it is facing difficulties in land funds.