Officials Want to Limit Vietnam’s Work Week to 40 Hours
Officials in Vietnam are campaigning to reduce the country's legal work week from 48 hours to 40 hours.
One of the effort's main supporters is Nguyen Thien Nhan. He is the secretary of Ho Chi Minh City's Communist Party central committee.
Nhan and others in the government have argued that making people work longer hours does not increase their productivity. Currently, Vietnam has a legal work week of 48 hours. This means people are expected to work six days a week, for eight hours a day.
Nhan says it is common for many workers to spend much longer on the job than the current legal limit. "Do we want our husbands or wives, our children or siblings to work nine to 10 hours a day all year round, or 10 to 12 hours a day for six months?" Nhan said. "We need to answer this question ourselves, before we even discuss overtime."
Some countries have already taken steps to reduce the number of working hours. For example, Australia bars employers from requiring employees to work more than 38 hours a week.
Some European countries have average work weeks far below 40 hours. In Germany, the average worker spends 1,363 hours on the job each year, a 2018 report by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) found. This equals about 26 hours per week.
Citizens of Denmark labor a little longer, with an average 1,392 working hours each year. Next is Norway, where workers spend 1,416 hours on the job.
Nhan and his supporters have noted that movements for a 40-hour work week date back to a gathering of socialist and labor parties in 1889. However, Nhan said the 40-hour work week also became a recognized right among capitalist nations.
In some countries, companies are taking their own steps to reduce working hours for employees. Microsoft Japan is testing out a four-day work week. Rheingans, a technology company in Germany, is limiting its workers to a five-hour workday.
In Vietnam, the 48-hour week is more common among the country's non-professional workers. Many government and professional workers work a 40-hour work week.
Nguyen Thi Xuan is a member of Vietnam's parliament. She has expressed worries that some companies may already be overworking employees under the 48-hour system. Xuan, who represents a farming town in Vietnam's Central Highlands, called for a reduction in working hours to protect the health and living standards of workers.
While Nhan and others keep pushing their campaign for a 40-hour work week, they are not expecting the change to happen anytime soon. Some are hoping their goal can be reached within 10 years. They have pointed out that Vietnam's Communist Party was founded in 1930. By the time the party turns 100, in 2030, the nation's workforce could receive a gift: a new 40-hour work week.
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阮善仁（Nguyen Thien Nhan）是这项措施的主要支持者之一 。他是胡志明市的市委书记 。
阮善仁和其他政府人员认为，延长工作时间并不能提高他们的生产效率 。目前，越南每周的法定工作时间为48小时 。这意味着人们每周要工作6天，每天工作8小时 。
阮善仁表示，许多工人的工作时间普遍超过了目前的法定时间 。阮善仁表示：“我们是否希望自己的丈夫或妻子，孩子或兄弟姐妹全年每天工作9到10小时，或者半年每天工作10到12小时？我们在讨论加班之前，需要自己先思考这一问题 。”
一些国家已经采取措施减少工作时间 。例如，澳大利亚禁止雇主要求员工每周工作超过38小时 。
一些欧洲国家平均每周工作时间远低于40小时 。经济合作与发展组织2018年的一份报告显示，德国工人每年平均工作时间为1363小时 。相当于每周工作26小时 。
丹麦公民的工作时间略长，每年平均工作时间为1392小时 。其次是挪威，每年平均工作时间为1416小时 。
阮善仁及其支持者表示，每周工作40小时的运动可以追溯到1889年社会党和工党的集会 。然而，阮善仁表示，每周工作40小时也已经成为资本主义国家公认的权利 。
在一些国家，各公司正在采取措施缩短员工的工作时间 。微软日本公司正在测试每周4天工作制 。德国Rheingans科技公司限制其员工每天只工作5小时 。
在越南，每周工作48小时在该国的非专业工人中更为普遍 。很多政府人员和专业人员每周工作40小时 。
阮氏宣是越南国会议员 。她担心，一些公司每周48小时的工作制可能让员工超负荷工作 。阮氏宣代表越南中部高原一个农业小镇，她呼吁减少工作时间，保障工人的身体健康和生活水平 。
尽管阮善仁等人继续推动着每周工作40小时的运动，但是他们并不指望这一改革能很快实现 。有些人希望他们的目标能在10年内实现 。他们指出，越南共产党成立于1930年 。到2030年的百岁诞辰，该国的劳动人民将会收到一份大礼——每周40小时的工作制 。