In this paper we provide evidence on the survival and growth of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Vietnam relying on three partly overlapping enterprise surveys sampled during the period 1990-2002. Our empirical results indicate that classical determinants of performance including firm age, firm size, location, ownership, degree of capital intensive production and the type of activity are also important in Vietnam. In addition to the traditional indicators we analyze the effect of government support. Government credit assistance during start-up contributed significantly to the growth of Vietnamese SMEs in the late 1990s, but the importance of this kind of support may be diminishing as new firms do not seem to benefit from this form of support. In contrast, the importance of legal advice appears to be increasing.