Hanoi Consumer Prices Rise 0.12% m/m in January
Hanoi’s Consumer Price Index (CPI) in January has increased an estimated 0.12% month-on-month and 1.19% year-on-year as prices of eight out of 11 goods categories went up, the municipal statistics office said on Thursday.
TPP States to Sign Trade Deal in New Zealand Next Month
The landmark Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal will be formally signed in New Zealand on February 4, marking the end of the negotiating process, said New Zealand Trade Minister Todd McClay.
“Following signature, all 12 countries will be able to begin their respective domestic ratification processes and will have up to two years to complete that before the agreement enters into force, he added.
Vietnam Shares Decline amid Global Selloffs
Vietnamese stocks dropped on Thursday as investors dumped shares following selloffs in Asian markets.
The VN Index plunged 1.43% to 512.88 while the HNX Index fell 1.19% to 73.06.
New Forex Policy Dampens USD Speculation
The State Bank of Vietnam (SBV)’s new exchange rate management mechanism has helped reduced U.S. dollar speculation in the country, said Bui Quoc Dung, head of the SBV’s Monetary Policy Department.
For the past two weeks after the new policy had been applied, the USD/VND interbank rate has changed flexibly, staying at 21,917 dong per dollar by January 15, up 27 dong against the end of last year. However, the rate quoted at commercial banks in the period decreased roughly 50 dong to 60 dong per dollar against the end of 2015, the official added.
He noted that the new policy has encouraged businesses and individuals to sell the greenback to commercial banks, adding that liquidation in the domestic forex market has been good, with smooth transactions for the past two weeks.
VAMC Cuts Rates on USD, EUR Loans
The central bank-run Vietnam Asset Management Company (VAMC) has reduced interest rates on EUR and USD-denominated bad loans it has purchased from credit institutions.
The interest rate on EUR-denominated NPLs has been slashed by 0.6 percentage point to reach 4.8% per year, while the rate for USD-denominated non-performing loans (NPLs) has been cut by 0.1 percentage point to 4.2% per year.
However, the interest rate on Vietnamese dong-denominated NPLs remains unchanged at 9.6% per year.
South Korea Exchange Eyes Vietnam Firms
The Korean Exchange (KRX), the operator of South Korea’s Securities and Derivatives Markets, said it has set up a working group of financial and legal experts to attract Vietnamese enterprises to the KRX, the Vietnam News Agency reported.
The groups will draw up action plans and organize meetings to introduce and provide financial consultations to potential firms. In the first phase, they will focus on luring foreign-invested businesses with successful performance in Vietnam.
Aeroports de Paris Shortlisted for Strategic Partner of ACV
France’s Aeroports de Paris has been put on the shortlist to buy up to buy a 20% stake and become the strategic investors of Airports Corporation of Vietnam (ACV), the Dau Tu newspaper reported.
“ADP is the sole investor to date that meets all criteria to buy a strategic stake set by the Ministry of Transport. We hopes to get the ministry’s approval by January 31 to proceed with negotiations,” said Nguyen Nguyen Hung, chairman of ACV.
India-headquartered Pricol Limited, an automotive components manufacturer, has plans to establish factories in Vietnam and Mexico and make acquisitions in Europe, the India Times reported.
“The project in Vietnam is expected by the next calendar year,” said Vikram Mohan, managing director of Pricol. The 40-year-old company currently has eight manufacturing locations and seven international offices.
Vietnam’s public debt was calculated at 61.3% of gross domestic product (GDP) as of December 31, 2015, lower than the 65%-of-GDP ceiling, the Debt Management and External Finance Department under the Ministry of Finance has said.
The country’s government debt stayed at 48.9% of GDP while the ratio of foreign debt was 41.5%, all within the secure limits.
Vietnamese lottery companies booked revenues of some $3 billion and paid $1 billion to state coffers in 2015, said a finance ministry official.
Vietnam SMEs Need More Support amid Foreign Investment Wave: Jetro
Small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Vietnam will face fiercer competition from strong foreign companies which will flock to the country to grab opportunities from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), Yasuzumi Hirotaka, executive director of the Japan External Trade Organization (Jetro) in HCM City, said at a forum on January 19.
Thus the Vietnamese government needs to provide preferential loans for SMEs and clear obstacles to the development of supporting industries, Mr. Hirotaka suggested.