Vietnam’s first ultra-clear float glass facility to start construction

Export value totalled US$97.7 billion in the first six months of 2017, up as high as 18.8 per cent over the same period of 2016 (up 5.9 per cent) on higher prices (mainly agricultural products and fuels) and shipments (manufactured products). Exports also increased month by month. Notably, fuel and mineral exports recorded very high growth of 40.2 per cent to reach US$2.29 billion in the six-month period. All commodities in these groups advanced, particularly coal (up 326 per cent), crude oil (36.2 per cent) and petroleum (31.2 per cent), on higher prices. The export of processed goods rose sharply by 19.1 per cent to US$78.56 billion. High and stable growth was seen in key exports, particularly electronic devices, electric devices and footwear. Woodwork export regained its high growth momentum to reach US$3.66 billion in the review period, up 13.9 per cent over the same period of 2016 (up only 1.1 per cent) because Chinese shipments to the United States were imposed anti-dumping duties, resulting in a redirection of export orders to ASEAN markets, particularly Vietnam. Therefore, there are many opportunities for the Vietnamese wood industry to enter the interior furniture market in the US. The third reason to the export jump was the six-month growth of agricultural, forestry and fishery products, rising 16.7 per cent to US$12.1 billion, led by the high growth of vegetables and fruits (43.5 per cent) and seafood (16.7). After a long period of slowdown, rice also drove…... [read more]

Cruise tourism is contributing significantly to the tourism industry and economy of Vietnam. However, in the long run, Vietnam needs the correct strategy and investment for modern seaport system development to unlock its potential strength. Impressive figures According to the General Statistics Office (GSO), Vietnam's cruise tourism has developed rapidly, with more international visitors coming to Vietnam. In 2016, Vietnam welcomed more than 10 million international visitors, including 284,855 arrivals by sea, up 67.7 per cent over 2015. In the first six months of 2017, tourist arrivals from the sea reached 170,843, an increase of 26 per cent over the same period of 2016. These results, according to tourism experts, come from Vietnam's favourable natural conditions, with more than 3,200 kilometres of coastline, thousands of islands, diverse ecosystems and world-renowned bays like Ha Long Bay, Nha Trang Bay, Vinh Hy Bay and Lang Co Bay. In addition, Vietnam is favourably located between two of the largest cruise tourism centres of Hong Kong and Singapore - the major economic hubs that open the door for Vietnam to access other countries in the region and the world from the East Sea. In addition, to attract and serve an increasing number of cruise trvellers to Vietnam, relevant authorities and tourism businesses have adopted many reform ad investment policies in the past years. Specifically, it has opened Phu Quoc Island and Con Dao Island to foreign tourists, it has waivered visas for cruise tourists to Vietnam, and reduced port fees for…... [read more]

Vietnamese shares weakened towards the end of Tuesday morning's session on both local markets after opening on a positive note as trading liquidity slowed down on poor investor sentiment. The benchmark VN Index on the HCM Stock Exchange declined 0.03 per cent to close Tuesday morning at 759.48 points. The benchmark VN Index on the HCM Stock Exchange declined 0.03 per cent to close at 759.48 points. It dropped total 1.5 per cent in the previous three days. The HNX Index on the Ha Noi Stock Exchange narrowed its gain to 0.30 per cent, ending at 97.22 points. The northern market index fell total 1.9 per cent in the previous three sessions. More than 136.4 million shares were traded on both local exchanges, worth VND2.94 trillion (US$130.6 million). Market trading condition was balanced with 197 stocks advancing and 210 stocks declining. Among the stock market's 20 sectors, property developers, energy firms and food and beverage producers were among the decliners. Companies that saw their share prices move down included brewer Sabeco (SAB), dairy producer Vinamilk (VNM), property firm Vingroup (VIC) and gas station operator Petrolimex (PLX). On the opposite side, PetroVietnam Gas (GAS), Bank for Investment and Development of Viet Nam (BID) and Vietinbank (CTG) were among the gainers, boosting the local stock market. The afternoon session starts at 1pm. Source VNA ... [read more]

Grab, the leading on-demand transportation and mobile payments platform in Southeast Asia, steps up its game with new investments. DiDi and Softbank open their wallets wide for Grab's current financing round The ride-hailing firm yesterday announced that DiDi Chuxing (DiDi), the world’s leading one-stop mobile transportation platform, and SoftBank Group Corp. (SoftBank), a global technology leader driving the Information Revolution, will invest up to $2.0 billion to lead Grab’s current financing round. Grab anticipates that it will raise an additional $500 million, bringing the total to $2.5 billion in this round from existing and new investors. This is the largest single financing round in the history of Southeast Asia. DiDi and SoftBank will continue to support Grab’s vision of helping customers in Southeast Asia access safe transportation and financial products, whilst creating employment opportunities. Grab is by far the most dominant on-demand transportation platform in the region, with a market share of 95 per cent in third-party taxi-hailing and 71 per cent in private vehicle hailing. The company will continue to strengthen its already-leading market position and invest in GrabPay, its proprietary mobile payments solution. Anthony Tan, the group’s CEO and co-founder, said that, “We are delighted to deepen our strategic partnership with DiDi and SoftBank. We are encouraged that these two visionary companies share our optimism for the future of Southeast Asia and its on-demand transportation and payments markets, and recognise that…... [read more]

Regional trade pacts and business climate improvements have made Vietnam become a manufacturing hub for ASEAN investors and firms. Vietnam’s cement sector has allured ASEAN investors with some big acquisition deals, Photo: Quynh Trang Rebecca Fatima Sta Maria, senior policy researcher from the Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA), said that under the institute’s latest survey about the ASEAN investment situation, Vietnam has been considered by ASEAN as “a regional special investment destination”. “Investment from ASEAN has been strongly flowing into Vietnam, focusing in many sectors, especially in the industrial manufacturing and processing sector,” Maria said at last week’s Hanoi-based conference on the 50-year anniversary of ASEAN, organised by Vietnam’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) and ERIA. ERIA statistics showed that by late 2016, the total registered investment capital inflows into Vietnam from ASEAN (Cambodia, Brunei, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand) reached almost $60 billion for 3,127 valid investment projects. About half of that is concentrated into the manufacturing and processing industry. “The fact that foreign direct investment (FDI) from ASEAN went into the manufacturing and processing industry the most demonstrates Vietnam is emerging as an important industrial manufacturing hub of ASEAN, also thanks to its improved business and investment climate,” Maria said. Nguyen Quoc Dung, MoFA Deputy Minister and Vietnam’s ASEAN SOM leader, said that ASEAN total registered capital into Vietnam has so far hit over…... [read more]

A new co-operation era has been taking shape between Vietnam and Cambodia, with the two countries committing to preserve their comprehensive relationship and raise their bilateral economic and investment ties. After 50 years of friendship, Vietnam and Cambodia are working to build an even stronger relationship Photo: VNA During his official state visit to Cambodia during July 20-22, and his first visit to this country since he was re-elected Party general secretary in early 2016, Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong conducted bilateral talks with Cambodian King Norodom Sihamoni, met with Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen – who is also the Cambodian People’s Party president – and talked with leaders of Cambodia’s National Assembly. The two sides reviewed their strong 50-year relationship, and affirmed that Vietnam and Cambodia will continue working together to strengthen their solidarity and enhance their traditional and comprehensive co-operation efforts. The two countries released a joint statement on strengthening Vietnam-Cambodia friendship, which is especially focused on reviewing their 50 years of relations and setting a new co-operation framework for the time to come. Both countries affirmed that economic and investment ties will continue serving as one of the key bilateral co-operation pillars. The two sides also set a goal of raising their bilateral trade volume from $2.93 billion last year to $5 billion by 2025. To this end, Vietnam and Cambodia pledged to continue implementing bilateral co-operation deals, removing…... [read more]

A ground-breaking new report by the G20’s Global Infrastructure Hub (GI Hub) outlines infrastructure investment needs globally and individually for 50 countries and seven sectors to 2040. The report, Global Infrastructure Outlook, reveals the cost of providing infrastructure to support global economic growth and to start to close infrastructure gaps is forecast to reach US$94 trillion by 2040, with a further US$3.5 trillion needed to meet the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for universal household access to drinking water and electricity by 2030, bringing the total to US$97 trillion. Outlook, which can be accessed through an online tool, also reveals that US$18 trillion – almost 19% – of the US$97 trillion, will be unfunded if current spending trends continue. Every year US$3.7 trillion will need to be invested in infrastructure to meet the demands of an accelerating global population, the equivalent of the total annual GDP of Germany, the world’s fourth largest economy. And in order to meet the water and electricity SDGs, the investment need forecast increases by an additional US$236 billion per year until 2030, when the goals are due to be met. This is not just a major challenge for emerging countries that need to create new infrastructure, but also for advanced countries that have ageing systems that have to be replaced. The United States will have the largest gap in infrastructure spending, at US$3.8 trillion, while China will have the greatest demand, at US$28 trillion, representing…... [read more]

Some experts have raised concerns over South Korea surpassing China in trade deficit, to become Vietnam’s biggest import market, however, others claimed these worries unfounded and considered it normal as Vietnam is integrating into the world economy. Workers in Doosan Heavy Industries Vietnam (Doosan Vina), a South Korean-invested enterprise in Vietnam (illustration) RELATED CONTENTS: Asian investors control M&A activities in Vietnam Korea scouts for investment opportunities in Can Tho Korean company plans VN aircraft engine parts factory South Korean musical to be staged in Da Nang South Korean IBCT to assist Vietnamese government agencies to develop web teleconferencing Windfall of South Korean high ballers Ha Nam to boost co-operation with South Korea Economists warn of growing trade deficit towards South Korea Origins of trade deficit towards South Korea Since April 2017, South Korea has taken over China to become Vietnam’s biggest import market with $9.3 billion of trade deficit for the first four months of 2017, slightly larger than China in this period. For the first half of 2017, Vietnam’s trade deficit towards South Korea totalled $16 billion, while it was $14.1 billion towards China. Many think that the leading position of South Korea derives from the huge import volumes of Samsung…... [read more]

With the aim of expanding operations in Vietnam, Carlton & United Breweries (CUB) has become a new competitor in the race to seize the stakes in Hanoi Beer, Alcohol and Beverages Corporation (Habeco) and Saigon Beer, Alcohol and Beverages Corporation (Sabeco). Australian brewer CUB will join the fray for the shares of both Habeco and Sabeco The companies intentions were stated by CUB general director Jan Craps at the meeting of Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue and the delegation of Australian enterprises on July 24, according to newswire Vnexpress. According to Jan Craps, CUB plans to expand its operations in the southern province of Binh Duong and is looking to become the strategic investor of both Habeco and Sabeco. According to information released by the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) at its monthly press conference organised on July 14, the sale of state stakes will be carried out this year. Bui Truong Thang, deputy director general of MoIT’s Light Industry Department, said Habeco will submit its divestment plan to the ministry this week and Sabeco’s divestment plan will also be submitted before the end of the month. At present, Habeco signed with Bao Viet Securities Company (BVSC) and Vietnam Valuation and Finance Consultancy (VVFC), appointing them as the consultancy firms for the state divestment. Regarding Sabeco, according to unofficial information, a venture of BVSC, VVFC, and Earnst & Young Vietnam Limited…... [read more]

Increasing the regional minimum wages for early 2018 continues to be a topic of heated debate between the employers and local authorities. Policy-makers, trade unions, and enterprises face off over this year's minimum wage increase At the first meeting organised last last month to discuss the increase of the regional minimum wages for 2018, various options for the wage were recommended, including increases of 5, 6, and 6.8 per cent. Specifically, the National Salary Council proposed the highest increase of 13.3 per cent. Thus the maximum wage difference between these opinions was a whopping 8 per cent, giving ample grounds for debate. Vu Quang Tho, director of the Institute of Workers and Trade Unions, said that according to the institute’s survey results, the living standards of Vietnamese employees are still low and an offset of 21 per cent in the minimum salary would be required to help employees meet minimum living standards. In 2017, the minimum salary was increased by 7.3 per cent, thus the increase of 13.3 per cent for 2018 could be reasonable. However, a representative of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) said that the economy has yet to warrant such a high raise and VCCI would be happy with an increase of under 5 per cent or even keeping wages unchanged. Regarding the employers, Than Duc Viet, deputy general director of Garment No.10 Corporation, also proposed to keep the minimum wage unchanged in 2018 because there…... [read more]

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