Preparing Vietnamese Business to Get Ready to Participate in Sustainable Supply Chains

HANOI, 14 December 2022 – Commissioned by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the Deutsche Gesellschaft für internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH in conjunction with Viet Nam Industry Agency under the Ministry of Industry and Trade (VIA/ MOIT), organised the roundtable titled "Moving from compliance to due diligence: Preparing Vietnamese business to get ready to participate in sustainable supply chains". This event is part of the Germany - Viet Nam cooperation in improving business compliance with social and environmental standards, to help raise the Viet Nam’s position in the global supply chain.

The roundtable was convened in the context of Viet Nam's growing position as a manufacturing hub and integration into global supply chains. Fifteen free trade agreements (FTAs) with partner nations and territories have so far been signed by Viet Nam. To benefit from the market opportunities provided by these FTAs, Vietnamese businesses must have a profound understanding of the commitments and requirements of the partner nations' markets and get ready for the implementation.

While productivity and quality standards remain key factors, international business partners are increasingly looking at social and environmental conditions when choosing their suppliers. This trend is getting another push by regulations around corporate sustainability due diligence, that have been passed in several industrialised countries. Such legislation requires companies to assess and mitigate risks of violation of labour and environmental standards throughout their supply chains.  

The Federal Republic of Germany, Viet Nam's largest trade partner in the European Union, will enforce its Act on Corporate Due Diligence Obligations for the Prevention of Human Rights Violations in Supply Chains (LkSG) as of January 1, 2023. The law requires large enterprises based in Germany to exercise due regard for human rights and environment-related obligations throughout their supply chains. Similar obligations are being set for the entire European Union, where a Directive on Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence is under discussion.

Although Vietnamese businesses are not directly regulated by these laws, it will nevertheless be relevant for them if they integrate into supply chains of companies that fall under these regulations. Being informed about the requirements of (potential) customers will help manufacturers to be well prepared by setting up internal systems to monitor and effectively enforce labour and environmental standards in their own business.  

Improving the social and environmental performance of businesses will significantly boost Viet Nam's standing in global supply chains and increase its added value. Vietnamese businesses that grow more sustainably and responsibly will also help the country meet its own sustainability commitments, such as the 2050 goal of becoming carbon neutral.

In recent years, the Ministry of Industry and Trade's Viet Nam Industry Agency has teamed up with numerous businesses and organisations to conduct initiatives aimed at enhancing the capabilities of domestic businesses. "Due diligence in supply chains and the resulting obligations are not new. However, these standards are becoming even more relevant, requiring more initiatives from businesses. Understanding and putting these requirements into practice will lower risks and strengthen the competitiveness of suppliers. Additionally, workers will directly benefit from this”, said Mr. Ngo Khai Hoan, VIA’s Deputy Director.

The Responsible Business Helpdesk (RBH) Viet Nam was introduced at the event as an initiative by the Viet Nam Confederation of Commerce and Industry (VCCI). "The RBH answers to the rising demand of enterprises to improve their social and environmental performance in the face of increased pressure from their customers. The Helpdesk will assist Vietnamese enterprises in understanding and preparing for the expectations of their customers. RBH will carry out awareness raising activities and connect brands with Vietnamese manufacturers for more sustainable supply chains”, said Ms. Tran Thi Hong Lien, Vice Director of The Bureau for Employer’s activities in Vietnam, VCCI.

RBH Vietnam receives technical support from German Development Cooperation GIZ in Viet Nam during its inception phase. It is managed by VCCI and is a member of the Responsible Business Helpdesk Network, which connects RBH offices around the world.

Contact for Media

Vietnam Industry Agency, Ministry of Industry and Trade

Ms. Nguyen Thi My Linh


GIZ Viet Nam

Ms. Nguyen Dao Tuyet Nga


Responsible Business Helpdesk (RBH) Vietnam

Ms. Mai Hong Ngoc