EVN unit calls off overseas training plans amid criticism

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Southern Power Corporation, a unit of state-owned utility EVN, has canceled plans to send 400 executives abroad for training after being criticized for extravagant spending despite the parent company's huge losses.

The company will proceed with only two field trips to China and South Korea scheduled for August while all 12 other planned trips for this year have been called off, news website VnExpress reported Friday.

The unit, also known as EVN SPC, had said the field trips would help improve managerial skills for its officials.

Experts, however, have questioned whether the short trips of between five to eight days are really necessary. They also criticized the company for not taking measures to cut spending even when the electricity sector as a whole is facing huge losses.

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EVN reported a loss of VND3.5 trillion (US$166.4 million) for 2011. The company raised average power prices by 5 percent on July 1 in an attempt to offset its losses.

SPC officials said they will review their future training plans to make necessary changes.

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