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Firm-Level Corruption in Vietnam

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  • John Rand
  • Finn Tarp

Abstract

This article uses panel data from a survey of small- and medium-sized enterprises in Vietnam to uncover which firms pay bribes and which do not. We also study how bribe paying evolved between 2005 and 2007 and test how the determinants of bribes changed between the two years. Three sets of insights emerge. First, bribe incidence is highly associated with firm-level differences in visibility, sunk costs, ability to pay, and some, but not all, types of interaction with public officials. Second, the magnitudes of bribes are distinctly higher for firms, which get preferential tax benefits and government contracts. Third, the observed decrease in bribe incidence between 2005 and 2007 is largely driven by significant behavioral changes. These behavioral changes seem to be associated with policy initiatives to improve law enforcement and increased media focus on punitive actions against corruption.

Suggested Citation

  • John Rand & Finn Tarp, 2012. "Firm-Level Corruption in Vietnam," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 60(3), pages 571-595.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:ecdecc:doi:10.1086/664022
    DOI: 10.1086/664022
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Xun Wu, 2009. "Determinants of Bribery in Asian Firms: Evidence from the World Business Environment Survey," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 87(1), pages 75-88, June.
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    7. Fisman, Raymond & Svensson, Jakob, 2007. "Are corruption and taxation really harmful to growth? Firm level evidence," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(1), pages 63-75, May.
    8. Nguyen, Binh T. & Albrecht, James W. & Vroman, Susan B. & Westbrook, M. Daniel, 2007. "A quantile regression decomposition of urban-rural inequality in Vietnam," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(2), pages 466-490, July.
    9. Clarke, George R. G. & Xu, Lixin Colin, 2004. "Privatization, competition, and corruption: how characteristics of bribe takers and payers affect bribes to utilities," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(9-10), pages 2067-2097, August.
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    Cited by:

    1. Tran, Viet T. & Walle, Yabibal M. & Herwartz, Helmut, 2020. "The impact of local financial development on firm growth in Vietnam: Does the level of corruption matter?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 62(C).
    2. Mai Huong Giang & Tran Dang Xuan & Bui Huy Trung & Mai Thanh Que & Yuichiro Yoshida, 2018. "Impact of Investment Climate on Total Factor Productivity of Manufacturing Firms in Vietnam," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 10(12), pages 1-18, December.
    3. Liming Zhou & Zhangfeng Jin & Zheng Wang, 2017. "Who gets caught for corruption when corruption is pervasive? Evidence from China’s anti-bribery blacklist," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 24(4), pages 258-263, February.
    4. Emmanuelle Lavallée & François Roubaud, 2019. "Corruption in the Informal Sector: Evidence from West Africa," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 55(6), pages 1067-1080, June.
    5. Zhiyong An, 2017. "Private Property Rights and Capital Structure: Empirical Evidence from the 2004 Constitutional Amendment in China," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 173(3), pages 454-469, September.
    6. Peter Grajzl & Valentina Dimitrova-Grajzl & Katarina Zajc, 2016. "Inside post-socialist courts: the determinants of adjudicatory outcomes in Slovenian commercial disputes," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 41(1), pages 85-115, February.
    7. Tran, Viet T. & Nguyen, Trung Thanh & Tran, Nguyet T.M., 2019. "Gender difference in access to local finance and firm performance: Evidence from a panel survey in Vietnam," Economic Analysis and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 63(C), pages 150-164.
    8. Le Trung Thanh, 2017. "Corruption, Provincial Institutions And Capital Structure: New Evidence From A Transitional Economy," Organizations and Markets in Emerging Economies, Faculty of Economics, Vilnius University, vol. 8(1).
    9. Axel Demenet & Hoang-Anh Ho & Sarah Morcillo, 2017. "Firm-level corruption: Unravelling sand from grease," WIDER Working Paper Series 123, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    10. Huong, Vu Van & Cuong, Ly Kim, 2019. "Does government support promote SME tax payments? New evidence from Vietnam," Finance Research Letters, Elsevier, vol. 31(C).
    11. Finn Tarp, 2018. "Vietnam: The dragon that rose from the ashes," WIDER Working Paper Series 126, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    12. Huong Vu & Tuyen Quang Tran & Tuan Nguyen & Steven Lim, 2018. "Corruption, Types of Corruption and Firm Financial Performance: New Evidence from a Transitional Economy," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 148(4), pages 847-858, April.
    13. Michael Breen & Robert Gillanders & Gemma Mcnulty & Akisato Suzuki, 2017. "Gender and Corruption in Business," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 53(9), pages 1486-1501, September.
    14. Peter Grajzl & Valentina Dimitrova-Grajzl & Katarina Zajc, 2016. "Inside post-socialist courts: the determinants of adjudicatory outcomes in Slovenian commercial disputes," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 41(1), pages 85-115, February.
    15. Nguyen, Ngoc Anh & Doan, Quang Hung & Tran-Nam, Binh, 2017. "Tax corruption and private sector development in Vietnam," MPRA Paper 84300, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    16. Axel Demenet, 2016. "Does Managerial Capital also Matter Among Micro and Small Firms in Developing Countries?," Working Papers DT/2016/12, DIAL (Développement, Institutions et Mondialisation).
    17. Ullah, Barkat, 2020. "Financial constraints, corruption, and SME growth in transition economies," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 75(C), pages 120-132.
    18. Tien Manh Vu & Hiroyuki Yamada & Tsunehiro Otsuki, 2014. "The rise and fall of multinational enterprises in Vietnam: survival analysis using census data during 2000-2011," OSIPP Discussion Paper 14E001, Osaka School of International Public Policy, Osaka University.
    19. Quoc-Anh Do & Trang Van Nguyen & Anh Tran, 2013. "Do People Pay Higher Bribes for Urgent Services ?: Evidence from Informal Payements to Doctors in Vietnam," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/3tk4fhvbi18, Sciences Po.

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