The largest alcoholic beverage manufacturer in Vietnam has been held accountable for issues concerning its distribution of profits and generation of significant financial losses after using the government budget to invest in various domestic businesses.
The State Audit Office of Vietnam, the organ examining the use of public finance and property, has submitted a report to the Ministry of Industry and Trade, in which it mentioned the ineffectiveness in investment by Saigon Beer-Alcohol-Beverage Corporation, otherwise known as Sabeco, which is partially owned by the government.
The auditing administration said that Sabeco used the state capital in 2016 but is incurring a loss at the present.
Therefore, the firm has had to make a VND444.7 billion (US$19.5 million) worth of provision offset any potential losses.
This amount of expenditure accounts for 77.8 percent of the value of investments originally used.
Most of the corporation’s ventures are in banking and stocks, which are remotely related to its core field, beverage production.
The three largest investment projects of VND154.1 billion ($6.8 million), VND126.8 billion ($5.6 million) and VND39.3 billion ($1.7 million), respectively, went to Orient Commercial Bank, DongA Bank, and PVI Saigon – an insurance business. 20
Sabeco has been discovered making a loss investing over VND20.8 billion ($913,000) in Vinashin, a state-owned shipping building enterprise whose name was recently sullied with infamous illicit practices by its former leaders.
The auditing administration proposed conducting an investigation into causes for the investment losses and people to blame for the situation at Sabeco.
It also required the Ministry of Industry and Trade to point out who amongst the ministry’s personnel failed to ensure that the beer giant’s dividends – profits for shareholders – accumulated from 2016 backwards were distributed to the government, the major owner of nearly 90 percent of the company’s shares back to the end of the year.
The auditing body said the government should have received VND2.5 trillion ($110 million) in dividends.
It wanted to ascertain who stood behind the excessive reward to the company’s chief executive officer, general director, head of control and chief accountant in fiscal 2015.
The officials were collectively paid more than VND15 billion ($659,000), which is VND12.7 billion ($527,000) higher than the allowed level.
Sabeco, with the catchphrase “Vietnam’s pride,” used to be a business nearly completely owned by the government before a Thai magnate bought more than half of its shares in December 2017.