Including all sizes large medium small and all types

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including all sizes (large, medium, small) and all types (state-owned, private, for- eign-owned, joint stock, joint venture) of enterprises. The second group consists of regulatory documents issued by the government, such as decrees and decisions. The third group are regulatory documents issued by ministries and provincial govern- ments, such as standards, directives, and circulars (in this case, regulations are mainly from the MONRE). The last group is the requirements from the customers. Table 2 summaries the key environmental requirements that the textile and garment SMEs in Vietnam have to comply with. The Law on Environmental Protection (52/2005/QH11), which was adopted on 29 November 2005 and took effective in 1 July 2006, is the most important environmental legislative in Vietnam. The law and its related decrees and decisions provide a foundation for environmental management activities in Vietnam. Within the 3 years from 2011 to 2013, a total of 18,400 violations of the law were prosecuted, resulting in total punishment fi nes of 196 billion Vietnamese dongs (MONRE 2014 ). However, after 8 years, the implementation of the law is patchy and environmental degradation continues; the law has become more complicated, with differing views on how to proceed. On one hand, the government and the public took a view that the law and its decrees are not strict enough. The fi nes applied in Decree 117/2009/ND-CP are not high enough to prevent enterprises from violating the environmental protection law. Many companies are willing to pay the penalties rather than to make investments in environmentally friendly technologies. Some companies have been equipped with modern wastewater treatment plants, but they have not used them because the operational costs are high. Very few fi rms have pollution emissions monitored because fi nes are inadequate to in- centivize expensive investment in pollution control equipment and polluters do not face criminal sanctions, a senior environmental economist from Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment said in our interview. 98 N.H. Nguyen et al.
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On the other hand, all companies interviewed think the environmental regula- tions in Vietnam are too hard. It is too dif fi cult for them to implement these requirements because they do not have enough human and fi nancial resources to do so. They consider these regulations to be big barriers for the development of their business. Current requirements are too hard for such small companies as us, one of the company managers said. One of the reasons why the current requirements are too hard for the companies is that they are being copied from the environmental laws of developed countries, and these are not easily implemented in Vietnam. This was veri fi ed by several Table 2 Key environmental requirements for textile and garment SMEs in Vietnam No. Name of the requirement 1.
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