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Business in brief
Date :  17/09/2018
(Sourced from various news agencies)
  • The Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee hosted a conference on September 15 to call for investment in building an Intelligent Operations Centre and a Socio-Economic Simulation and Forecast Centre. The two centers are among the key measures in a master plan on developing Ho Chi Minh City into a smart city in the 2017-2020 period, with a vision to 2025. The conference focused on calling on investors to share experience and technologies on building and launching a vision and criteria for building Ho Chi Minh City into a smart city, as well as to select investors for the city’s major construction projects. The project aims to resolve the city’s existing problems such as unsustainable economic growth, flooding, traffic jams, and environment pollution, as well as enhancing the interaction between city’s administration, businesses and citizens in the building and development of the country. (NDO)
  • Vietnam exported 4.53 million tons of rice in the first eight months of 2018, bringing in US$2.29 billion, a rise of 10.5% in volume and 26.5% in value, according to the General Department of Customs. In August rice shipments saw a strong increase against previous months, with export prices averaging at US$489.1 per ton. The average price over the January-August period reached US$504.4 per ton, up 14.6% compared with the same period of last year. China was the largest buyer of Vietnamese rice, accounting for nearly one quarter of Vietnam’s rice shipments. The average price of rice exports to the world’s second largest economy was US$521.1 per ton. Rice shipments to Indonesia fell sharply in August but the aggregate figures for the first eight months of 2018 were still strong, up more than 50 times in volume and 67 times in value. The Philippines was the third largest market for Vietnamese rice with strong growth in August. The country currently needs an additional 500,000-800,000 tons until the end of the year to fill its depleted inventory and to stabilize domestic rice prices. (NDO)
  • Vietnam’s exports of processed fruit and vegetables ballooned by 79.5% during the first half of this year, according to the International Trade Centre (ITC). Vietnam was also the second largest supplier of fruit and edible drupes to Australia in the six months, with an export value of US$58 million, down 11.3% against the corresponding period last year yet still accounting for 16.8% of Australia’s total imports of such products. According to statistics from the General Department of Vietnam Customs, the country’s fruit and vegetable exports reached US$362.8 million in August, a year-on-year rise of 13.1%, bringing the total value of exports in the eight months to US$2.7 billion, up 14.8%. The main importers of Vietnamese products were China, the US and the Republic of Korea. It’s noteworthy that exports to Thailand and Australia saw impressive growth over the first 8 months of the year. (VOV)
  • The Czech Republic’s exports to Vietnam surged 580.5% to more than 45.5 million USD in July from the previous month, much higher than the monthly average of 7-10 million USD, according to the Czech Statistical Office. During the month, the European country’s major exports to Vietnam included sound and image recording equipment and television sets worth about 40.5 million USD. Other exported products such as optical, movie and surgery equipment; glass and crystal, plastics, seedlings, pharmaceuticals, medicinal herbs and industrial plants maintained growth or fell slightly. In the seven months of this year, Vietnam’s exports of audio-visual equipment to the Czech Republic neared 202 million USD, followed by footwear and similar products worth more than 141 million USD. Shipments of rubber, inorganic chemical compound, leather, garment accessories, apparel, mechanical equipment, wooden furniture reached between 9-48 million USD. By the end of July, two-way trade rose by 18.1 percent to about 681 million USD, which is forecast to top 1 billion USD this year. (VNA)
  • The US Department of Commerce (DOC) reduced anti-dumping duties on Vietnamese tra and basa (pangasius) fish under its preliminary conclusion of the 14th period of review (POR14) for the period from August 1, 2016 to July 31, 2017. Accordingly, the preliminary anti-dumping taxes on products of two mandatory respondents are 0 USD per kilogram, and 1.37 USD per kilogram. The tariff for voluntary respondents is 0.41 USD per kilogram, while the tax imposed on other Vietnamese exporters not examined as mandatory or voluntary respondents will be 2.39 USD per kilogram, lower than the final results of POR13. Although the DOC is scheduled to announce the final results of POR14 in January 2019, its move to lower the anti-dumping tariffs is seen as a positive signal for Vietnamese catfish exporters. VASEP said that tra fish exports to the US market hit 196.8 million USD in the first six months of the year, accounting for 19.6 percent of total tra fish shipments, and up 11.6 percent from the same period in 2017. A decline in the world supply was attributed to the increase of export revenue as it made the prices of tra fish increase during January-June. (VNA)
  • The Vietnam National Petroleum Group (Petrolimex) is proceeding to sell a maximum of 60 million treasury stocks on the Ho Chi Minh Stock Exchange, the second sale of its kind since its debut in April 2017. Treasury stocks, or reacquired stocks, are stocks which are bought back by the issuing company from shareholders, intended for resale to the public. The sales will depend on the conditions and developments on the stock market but will be conducted as soon as possible in the last quarter of this year after getting the nod from the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) and the State Securities Commission, according to ndh.vn. The MoIT, which represents the State capital in the company, is the biggest stakeholder of Petrolimex with an ownership of 75.87 percent as of December 31, 2017. JX Nippon Oil & Energy Vietnam Consulting and Holdings Co Ltd holds an 8 percent stake. Petrolimex owned more than 135 million treasury stocks after the sale. These stocks were reacquired in September 2016 at only 10,600 VND per share. (VNA)
  • Construction of a US$42 million solar power plant commenced on Sunday in the southern province of Long An’s Thạnh Hóa District. Financed by BCG Băng Dương Energy JSC, an affiliate of Bamboo Capital Group in HCM City, the 50.2-ha plant targets to produce 60 million kWh of power each year.  It is slated for completion no later than June 2019. The investor will also develop a 110kV substation in Thạnh Hóa District, build an internal road system and install a pump system for reservoirs and a 9km transmission line. To support socio-economic development, the country is encouraging renewable energy development to reduce the dependence on fossil fuels. Under the plan, the total designed capacity of solar power generation must amount to 850MW in 2020 and 4,000MW by 2025. Meanwhile, the total capacity of solar power set for 2030 is 12,000MW. (VNS)
  • Kien Giang province has approved a list of 81 projects calling for investment until 2020, said Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee Pham Vu Hong. Accordingly, there are seven projects in tourism, 11 in trade, six in environment, 13 in agricultural product processing and high-tech aquaculture, six in urban and rural water supply, 15 in industrial production, 10 in industrial park infrastructure, four in urban and housing development, and nine in transportation. According to the provincial Department of Planning and Investment, the province has to date had 48 valid FDI projects covering over 35,338ha with a combined registered investment of over 2.7 billion USD. As much as 613 million USD has been distributed. Since 2017, the province has lured eight FDI projects from Japan, Russia, Australia, and the Republic of Korea, with a total registered investment of 1.34 billion USD. They are in the areas of transport, tourism, service, oil transport, and footwear production. Many of them have already become operational. (VNA)
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