[Round-up] China Invests over $56 Billion in Vietnam, Formosa’s Discharge under Scrutiny

Tuan Minh

21:35 04/05/2016

BizLIVE - China had invested $56.7 billion as of the end of last year. The Vietnamese government is looking into the licensing and supervision of the wastewater discharge system at Formosa Ha Tinh Steel Corp.

[Round-up] China Invests over $56 Billion in Vietnam, Formosa’s Discharge under Scrutiny

A working team of the environment ministry inspects the wastewater treatment facility of Formosa steel mill on April 28, 2016. (Photo: Tuoi Tre)

Gobi Partners-backed Dining App Offpeak Plans Vietnam Expansion
Gobi Partners-backed dining marketplace Offpeak, which is already present in Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand, is working on its expansion plans for Vietnam following last year’s launch in the country, Deal Street Asia reported.  
Existing players in the Vietnamese market like Foody, Lozi and Vietnammm might not be Offpeak’s direct competitors, said Christian Nguyen, co-founder of the startup and CEO for the Vietnam ops.
Vietnam Textile Industry Wants Strategy Update
Vietnam’s domestic garment and textile industry wants to revise a development plan to 2020 with vision for 2030, to update the current plan, approved in April 2014, under which the country’s garment exports would reach $20 billion-$25 billion by 2020.
However, in 2015, the industry already earned an export turnover of $27.5 billion and the figure is poised to increase thanks to opportunities from trade agreements such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), Vietnam-Korea Free Trade Agreement, and EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement.
Hanoi to Host Asian Banker Summit Next Month
The Asian Banker Summit, organized by The Asian Banker, will take place at JW Marriott Hanoi Hotel in Hanoi on May 10-12, according to the Vietnam News Agency.
The summit is expected to bring together over 1,000 senior bankers, regulators, corporate and broker-dealers, as well as treasurers, consultants and service providers from the financial services industry from more than 32 countries.
EU Trade Deal May Result in Growing Vietnam Trade Deficits
After the free trade agreement between the EU and Vietnam is fully implemented, the Southeast Asian country’s current trade surplus will likely turn into a trade deficit as more EU businesses migrate to operate their companies here, VOV cited Miriam Garcia Ferrer, head of the trade section of the EU Delegation to Vietnam, as saying.
The bottom line is that Vietnam is a choice location of EU investors, and as a result more companies will likely migrate here making it more difficult for local companies to compete, unless they can up their game and become more competitive.
China Invests over $56 Billion in Vietnam
As many as 4,759 projects invested by China (including mainland China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau) in Vietnam worth $56.7 billion remained valid as of the end of last year, according to Foreign Investment Agency under the Ministry of Planning and Investment.
Of the figure, Taiwan invested in 2,478 projects capitalized at nearly $31 billion, China with 1,296 projects valued at roughly $10.2 billion projects, Hong Kong with 975 projects valued at $15.5 billion and Macau with 10 projects capitalized at $57 million.
Four Asian Conglomerates Dominate Business Landscape in Vietnam
Four Asian giants predicted to be able to change the face of some industries and economic branches in Vietnam include CJ Group, Ayala, SCG and Central Group, according to VietNamNet.
The four foreign conglomerates have been propping up investment in Vietnam through direct investment or acquisitions of local firms.
Vietnam Ups Anti-dumping Duties on Stainless Steel Imports
The Ministry of Industry and Trade has revises up anti-dumping duties on cold-rolled stainless steel products imported from China and Indonesia while slightly cutting tariffs on similar products imported from Malaysia.
The tariffs imposed on Chinese steel were raised to 17.47%-25.35% from 4.64%-6.87%.
Formosa’s Discharge under Scrutiny
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has ordered the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment and Ha Tinh province’s authorities to report on the licensing and supervision of the wastewater discharge system at Taiwan’s Formosa Ha Tinh Steel Corp.
He asked for the construction of a monitoring station to check wastewater discharged from the Taiwanese firm as the cause of the fish kill remains unknown.
Consumer Electronic Sales Robust in Vietnam: GfK
Within the Asia-Pacific region, developing countries like India, Vietnam and Indonesia have been strong drivers of consumer electronic sales in recent times, says a report by GfK.
Smartphones were the most bought item both online and offline across the ten markets surveyed, with India, Vietnam and Indonesia taking the lead, according to the German market research company.
Vietnam’s gross domestic product (GDP) may fail to deliver a 6.7% expansion targeted for this year, the Ministry of Planning and Investment said in a report submitted to a regular cabinet meeting Wednesday.
The nation’s economic growth slowed to 5.46% in the first quarter of this year, compared to a 7.01% increase in the previous quarter. The slowdown was recorded in the agricultural production as well as the manufacturing sector, said the report.
The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) will help boost Vietnam’s trade, improve the financial sector as well as make its state-owned enterprises (SOEs) more competitive, said K.C. Fung, a professor of economics at the University of California, as the Vietnamese parliament is expected to ratify the agreement in the coming July.
Vietnam is leading the fast-growing economies in the Southeast Asian region, helped by rapidly growing exports of electronics and garment manufactures, the International Monetary Fund said in its latest “Regional Economic Outlook for Asia and the Pacific” report.
“In Vietnam, exports and FDI are expected to perform well as cost-sensitive producers continue to be attracted by the country’s large labor force and generally low wages,” says the report.