Feb 2, 2013

Vietnam - A great many ways farmers chase debtors

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VietNamNet Bridge – With farmers being the creditors, who are the poor and do not want to spend money and time on lawsuits, they have been applying their special methods to collect debts.

Chasing debtors to fly from creditors

The people, who are the creditors of the Dai Tan ethanol plant in Quang Nam province, have been living in the tents installed in front of the plant for the last several months. They have been waiting here, hoping to meet the owners of the plant to ask to pay debts.

The people themselves are also the big debtors. Since they cannot get paid from the plant, they don’t have money to pay to farmers for materials. Since farmers contact them to ask to pay debts every day, they have to leave their homes and “settle down” there after asking for the permission to reside temporarily from the local authorities.

Since the owners of the plant refused to meet them, the creditors have to lie as protests in front of the plant for several months. However, their method seems to come to nothing.

One of the people here said the Dai Tan plant owes VND2 billion to him, and he now dares not return to the home village, because he does not have money to pay for the cassava collected from farmers.

Going to quod for interfering in debtor’s business

Two fish sellers in Can Tho City have been sentenced to jail because they demolished the assets and took away the machines and equipment of an enterprise which could not pay billions of dong to them.

In 2009, Pham Thi Mai and Nguyen Van Lien farmed fish to sell Van Hung private enterprise. The fish sale deal was valued at VND5 billion dong, while Van Hung still owed VND1.6 billion to the two farmers.

In January 2011, Mai said she wanted to buy Van Hung enterprise at VND5 billion dong, and the proposal was accepted by the two managers of Van Hung. Mai suggested the enterprise purchase as a payment of the debt, after she failed to ask the enterprise to pay for the fish.

The seller and buyer agreed to meet each other in February 2011 to follow necessary administrative procedures to wrap up the deal. However, Van Hung then changed its mind. Therefore, Mai got angry, broke the office glass and left.

After that, Mai sent workers to Van Hung many times to take away machines, equipment and many other assets of the enterprise which she has sold for billions of dong.

Later, Vo Thanh Tung, another creditor of Van Hung also came to ask for payment. He also applied the same method to force Van Hung to pay debt.

Farmers threaten to drink poison if company doesn’t pay debts

In August 2012, a lot of farmers encircled the house of the director of Bianfishco to ask the businesswoman to pay for their fish. The case was so serious that the Can Tho City People’s Committee had to report to the Prime Minister about the case.

Tens of fish farmers gathered in front of the house of Pham Thi Dieu Hien, Director of Bianfishco for half a month to demand debt payment. Sometimes they sent words through the loudspeakers to Tran Van Tri, the husband of Dieu Hien that they would not leave unless Tri and Hien pay debts.

The wife of Tran Van Hon, 57, one of the creditors, joined the group of farmers with a bottle of pesticide. She said that if she cannot get money, she and her husband would commit suicide because they have been reduced to destitution.

Hanh Giang

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