The Binh Duong government has offered soft loans of up to VND50 billion (US$2.4 million) to each firm hit by anti-China riots in May, aiming to restore its reputation as a safe province for foreign businesses.
The loans will be drawn from a VND1 trillion ($47.2 million) relief package intended to help businesses purchase new equipment and rebuild damaged factories.
The victims of vandalism, looting and arson during the riots can contact the Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam (BIDV) to obtain preferential loans at a fixed annual interest rate of seven percent for three years.
The companies need only pay half the interest; the province will subsidize the rest.
Le Trung Thanh, deputy general director of BIDV, told TBKTSG Online that his bank plans to disburse the whole VND1-trillion package by the end of this year.
At the ceremony to announce the package in the southern province of Binh Duong on Thursday, the lender signed contracts with ten companies for loans worth VND480 billion ($22.7 million) in total.
These firms include Chutex Textile, Thong Dung Shoes and Viet Hsing Garment, which were heavily affected during the mid-May riots that erupted out of peaceful demonstrations against China’s illegal placement of a mobile oil rig in Vietnamese waters on May 2.
Tran Van Nam, deputy chairman of Binh Duong’s People’s Committee, said at the ceremony that hundreds of stricken enterprises have recieved roughly VND811 billion ($38.3 million) in tax breaks and cuts in special consumption tax and land lease fees.
Nam also said the provincial government is reviewing hard-hit businesses to grant new investment certificates and give them corporate income tax incentives.
The Binh Duong riots broke out on May 13-14 after workers joining peaceful demonstrations against China's illegally positioned oil rig were instigated to vandalize Chinese-owned factories in industrial parks across the province.
Taiwanese businesses, mistaken for being Chinese, suffered the most.
Similar riots also broke out in industrial zones in nearby Dong Nai Province and at a steel mill being built by Taiwan’s Formosa Plastics Group in the north-central province of Ha Tinh.
Dozens of people in Binh Duong, Dong Nai, and Ha Tinh, received jail terms for rioting, vandalism, and looting.