PM promises optimal conditions for ExxonMobil

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has said it is necessary to create a special legal framework to attract investment in special zones. A draft law will allow foreigners to own houses for up to 99 years and allow mortgaging of assets associated with land-use rights at foreign credit institutions, which is in line with the 2013 Constitution. Nguyen Manh Ha, chair of the Vietnam Real Estate Brokerage Association, that the ownership time limit of 99 years is not a new regulation.  Under Decree 99/2015, foreigners can own houses for 50 years and have the right to an extension of no more than 50 years.  The difference between the current regulation and the new law to be enacted is that foreigners will not have to ask for an extension to own houses for 99 years. Ha said this shows the government of Vietnam’s strong determination to pave the way for attracting investments into economic zones.  The policy would create best conditions for expats in Vietnam to access houses more easily. However, very few banks are willing to help foreigners follow necessary procedures to buy properties in Vietnam.  Thus, there is a need for closer coordination between government agencies and credit institutions as well as project developers in attracting home buyers in Vietnam. The Republic of Korea once restricted foreigners’ house purchases, but after the financial crisis, it allowed foreigners to buy houses.  Indonesia allows foreigners to own property in the…... [read more]

VietNamNet Bridge – Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc and a high-ranking delegation paid an official visit to Thailand from August 17-19 at the invitation of Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Thailand Prayut Chan-o-cha. During the visit, the two sides issued a joint statement. Following is the full text of the joint statement: 1. His Excellency Mr. Nguyen Xuan Phuc, Prime Minister of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, and his wife paid an official visit to Thailand from August 17-19, 2017 at the invitation of His Excellency General (Ret.) Prayut Chan-ocha, Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Thailand. 2. Prime Minister Phuc’s delegation included His Excellency Mai Tien Dung, Minister – Chairman of the Government Office; His Excellency Mr. Tran Tuan Anh, Minister of Industry and Trade; His Excellency Mr. Chu Ngoc Anh, Minister of Science and Technology; His Excellency Mr. Nguyen Xuan Cuong, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development; His Excellency Mr. Truong Minh Tuan, Minister of Information and Communications, His Excellency Mr. Le Minh Hung, Governor of the State Bank of Vietnam, as well as other distinguished representatives from various ministries and agencies. 3. During the visit, Prime Minister Phuc was accorded a ceremonial welcome and had a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Prayut, who hosted dinner in Prime Minister Phuc’s honour. Prime Minister Phuc paid courtesy calls on President of Legislative Committee; President of Privy Council General Prem Tinsulanonda and met with Chairman of Thailand – Vietnam Friendship Association, Mr. Prachuab Chaiyasan; CEO of leading Thai…... [read more]

The government in 2014-2015 gradually restored business confidence, helping reduce the ‘fear-of-failure’ index to 45.6% in 2015.  However, according to Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM), the index has always been high. It was 56.7% in 2013, the second highest level among 70 surveyed economies. The government’s efforts helped Vietnam rise to the eighth position among 60 surveyed economies in 2015. Vietnam’s business environment index in 2017 went up nine notches, from 91st to 82nd, with Vietnam among the economies with the most considerable improvement, just after Brunei (+25 grades) and Indonesia (+15 grades), according to the World Bank.  “Embezzlement, copyright abuse and lengthy administrative procedures, however, are the three biggest problems,” Nguyen Mai, chair of VAFIEs (the Vietnam Association of Foreign Invested Enterprises), said. The total FDI (foreign direct investment) registered capital in Vietnam in the first six months of the year increased by 54.8% compared with the same period last year, according to an MPI report.  However, analysts noted the absence of strong investments from American and European investors. Western investors are cautious when making investments, especially in developing countries like Vietnam. A delegation of representatives from 29 US leading conglomerates came to Vietnam last March, just to learn about the government of Vietnam’s reform of investment environment and make proposals on amending current policies. The US has never been the No 1 foreign direct investor in Vietnam. It ranks seventh among the biggest foreign investors in the country. …... [read more]

The development of Vietnam-Singapore Industrial Park Joint Venture Company (VSIP) is a prime example of the success of Singaporean investors in Vietnam for many years. Most Singaporean investment projects in Vietnam are considered to be effective and greatly contribute to job creation, export growth and economic growth in Vietnam. VSIP, a joint venture between Becamex IDC Corporation and Sembcorp Group, has been active in Vietnam for more than 20 years, a typical example of successful Singaporean investors in Vietnam. Set up in 1996 from a landmark agreement between the two governments, VSIP has grown and rapidly expanded to become a leading industrial developer in Vietnam and is operating seven modern projects all over the country. VSIP is seen as one of the symbols of friendly relationship and good economic cooperation between the two countries. VSIP has to date attracted a total investment of US$9 billion from over 630 multinational corporations, including the world's leading corporations such as Microsoft, Pepsi and Unilever. While promoting the transition process and enhancing economic value from contributions of foreign business customers, VSIP has also succeeded in creating positive impacts on society and improving livelihoods of local people. It has created over 174,000 jobs in the service industry. To continue its growth momentum and provide more diversified services to investors, VSIP also has announced the signing of memorandums of understanding (MoUs) on project expansion studies in Binh Duong and Bac Ninh provinces. These two expansion projects are likely to…... [read more]

After the Governments of Vietnam and Singapore agreed to lift the relationship to the so-called strategic partnership, the bilateral trade value has always accounted for a big share of total trade value of each side. Singapore has become Vietnam's largest trading partner in ASEAN and sixth in the world. The two-way trade value has annually increased about 12 per cent, reaching US$7.16 billion in 2016, accounting for 17.3 per cent of Vietnam’s trade value with ASEAN states. The two-way trade value amounted US$4.3 billion in the first six months of 2017, with US$1.5 billion for Vietnam and US$2.8 billion for Singapore. As a result, Vietnam ran a trade deficit of US$1.3 billion with Singapore. Vietnam’s imports from Singapore rose 10.58 per cent year on year in the first six months of 2017. Petroleum was a staple, accounting for 46 per cent of total turnover, or US$1.3 billion, representing an on-year growth of 43.77 per cent. The second biggest import from Singapore was computers, electronic products and components although the value declined sharply by 40.06 per cent. In the face of trade deficit, Vietnam is proposing Singapore to facilitate Vietnamese products such as agricultural and seafood products to enter the latter to order to equalise the trade balance. Singapore imports 90 per cent of food for its domestic consumption. This is a favourable condition for Vietnamese companies to tap this market with rice, coffee, tea, fruits, vegetables and handicrafts. Meanwhile, Singaporean companies have strengths in…... [read more]

Vietnam currently has 408 investment projects in Laos with a total registered investment capital of US$3.7 billion, statistics show. Vietnam and Laos recently hosted the Conference on Professional Exchanges between Vietnam-Laos Planning and Investment Sectors 2017 took place in Da Nang City to further boost bilateral relations between the governments of the two countries. 2017 also marked a milestone year of Vietnam-Laos solidarity aimed to deepen the special friendship, solidarity and comprehensive cooperation between the two neighbours. Mr Nguyen Chi Dung, Minister of Planning and Investment of Vietnam, said, Vietnamese enterprises are continuing to invest and make a positive contribution to Laos’ socio-economic development. They have to date invested 408 projects worth US$3.7 billion in Laos. In addition, the Government of Vietnam still offers a grant of VND850 billion (US$30 million) to Laos. According to experts, aid projects have been implemented with ensured quality and progress. In addition, Vietnam also supports Laos to build the House of the National Assembly which is estimated to cost US$100 million while effectively carrying out the Protocol for Cooperation in Official Training in the 2017 - 2021 period. In addition, in the new Bilateral Trade Agreement and the Border Trade Agreement, the two sides have actively coordinated in executing specific terms and conditions and made progress in traffic connectivity. Training cooperation has been more and more effective and training quality has been improved with more than 14,000 Lao students studying in Vietnam, of which more than 3,400 are under the agreements.…... [read more]

Chairwoman of the National Assembly of Vietnam Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan (R) welcomes President of the National Legislative Assembly of Thailand Pornpetch Wichitcholchai on August 14 (Photo: VNA) Hanoi (VNA) – Lawmakers of Vietnam and Thailand should continue to share common viewpoints and support each other in issues of common concern at international and regional inter-parliamentary forums, thus contributing to peace, stability and development in Asia-Pacific. The remark was made during talks in Hanoi on August 14 between Chairwoman of the National Assembly (NA) of Vietnam Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan and President of the National Legislative Assembly (NLA) of Thailand Pornpetch Wichitcholchai, who is on an official visit to Vietnam from August 13 to 16. The two sides noted the soundly developing relations between the countries, which can be seen through regular mutual visits by high-ranking delegations. Chairwoman Ngan affirmed Vietnam’s consistent policy of prioritising the strategic partnership with Thailand. She asked both sides to work more closely to effectively carry out the plan of action to implement their strategic partnership between 2014 and 2018, as well as important cooperation mechanisms such as the joint cabinet meeting, the political consultation, the high-level dialogue on security, and the dialogue on defence policy. The officials said to optimise the countries’ cooperation potential, specialised agencies of the two parliaments should closely supervise the Governments’ cooperation agreements and maintain delegation exchanges at all levels. The two parliamentary friendship groups also need to increase connections. Highlighting thriving trade…... [read more]

The auction to be held on 21st August is by John Hume, the world’s largest rhino farmer, and the auction website has both a Vietnamese and Chinese language option in addition to English. HSI believes there is a significant risk that horns from this auction, even if purchased legally in South Africa, may end up being trafficked to Asian consumer markets by organized criminal syndicates. The South African government estimates that a rhino is killed for its horn about every eight hours in South Africa, largely to satisfy black market demand in Vietnam and China. The horn to be auctioned is ‘trimmed’ from Hume’s 1,500 farmed rhino, and purportedly aimed at the domestic rhino horn trade which is now legal following a ruling in April by South Africa’s constitutional court, lifting a 2009 ban. However, in light of the suspicious language options on the site, the Vietnamese government has reiterated in an official statement that according to Vietnamese law, rhino horn purchased at this auction could not be legally exported to Vietnam for commercial, medical or personal purposes. Manh Tien Vuong, deputy director of the Vietnam CITES Management Authority, said, “According to Decision 11/2013/QD-TTg dated 24/01/2013, Vietnam prohibits all trade in white and black rhinoceroses and their products with only narrow exceptions for purposes such as law enforcement, political, scientific research, and zoological display.”   This auction comes at a time when rhino poaching is at crisis point,…... [read more]

  Vietnam pledges to promote investment in women (Source: VNA)   Manila (VNA) – The Government of Vietnam has attached importance to and implemented numerous concrete measures to promote gender equality and women empowerment, Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh said at a seminar in the Philippines on August 6. The seminar on Investing in Women Initiative, part of the activities of the 50th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM 50), was chaired by Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, and attended by Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi and representatives of female entrepreneurs from Australia, and other ASEAN nations. Minh welcomed and highly valued the pioneering role of the Government of Australia in promoting gender equality and women empowerment in the region. Support for the participation and enhancement of women role at micro-, small- & medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) is an effective way to give more power to women in socio-economic development while boosting the sustainable growth and development of MSMEs, contributing to the development of prosperity of nations, Minh affirmed. The Investing in Women programme is an initiative of the Australian government, worth 46 million AUD. It aims to empower women in socio-economic activities in Asian – Pacific nations. The programme provides financial assistance for MSMEs, develops legal framework, and establish female entrepreneur’s alliance, thus creating a favourable condition, job opportunities, and enhancing the role and participation of women in socio-economic development. It also aims to create more education opportunities for girls.-VNA... [read more]

Mozambique’s Prime Minister Carlos Agostinho do Rosario led a delegation to visit the National Steering Committee for response to incidents, natural disasters and search and rescue in Hanoi on July 31. Mozambican Prime Minister Carlos Agostinho do Rosario (third, left), Sen. Lieut. Gen. Pham Ngoc Minh (fourth, left), Deputy Chief of the General Staff of the Vietnam People's Army and delagates He said Mozambique has long been impacted by natural disasters and climate change, expressing his hope the Committee will share its experience and skills in adapting to natural disasters and mining incidents on the basis of friendship between the two nations. Pham Ngoc Minh, Deputy Chief of the General Staff of the Vietnam People's Army, and Vice Head of the Steering Committee, said the Government of Vietnam has paid due attention to responding to incidents, natural disasters and search and rescue. Over the past 10 years, the Committee has warned more than 3.5 million vehicles, with nearly 18 million people on board on the progress of tropical low pressure systems and storms. Some 2.1 million people have been mobilised to participate in efforts responding to incidents, natural disasters, and 34,000 people were rescued. Around-the-clock local resources have been deployed to tackle natural disasters, Minh said. During their stay, the delegation visited the Committee’s Vietnam Search and Rescue Coordination Centre. VNA... [read more]

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