U.S. Businesses Await to Scale up Investment in Vietnam
A number of U.S. companies are selecting locations and waiting for the leadership change of Vietnam to be determined at the ongoing party congress before making final decisions regarding their investment projects in the country, the Vietnam Investment Review (VIR) reported.
Some U.S. firms are seeking investment opportunities in the IT and consumer goods sectors in the country, with projects’ total investment capital expected to be over $1 billion, said Nguyen Viet Ha, managing director of the US’ investment consultant BowerGroupAsia Inc.
Coca-Cola is reported to be planning another $300 million investment in Vietnam over the next few years while Jabil, the world’s third largest electronic equipment maker, is also expected to begin a $500 million expansion of its existing $200 million factory in Saigon Hi-Tech Park in Ho Chi Minh City this year.
First Foreign Firm Allowed to Join Vietnam Lottery Market
Malaysia’s Berjaya Corporation Berhad, or BCorp, and Berjaya Sports Toto Berhad have announced they were granted investment registration certificate to win an exclusive 18-year contract to invest in and operate a nationwide computerized lottery in Vietnam.
The certificate was granted last week to BCorp and Vietnamese state-owned lottery firm Vietlott, the only one granted to do computerized lottery business in the country, as a Business Cooperation Contract (BCC), international media reported.
The investment for the project is estimated at around $210.58 million. Its first game, a lotto jackpot one, is expected to be launched by mid-2016.
Canada Appoints Ambassador to ASEAN
The Canadian government has recently appointed Marie-Louise Hannan as Canada’s ambassador to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
This is the first time Canada has had a dedicated ambassador to ASEAN, marking the expansion of Canada’s permanent mission to ASEAN, in Jakarta, and demonstrates Canada’s strong commitment to enhanced relations with ASEAN, the Canadian Embassy in Hanoi said in a press release.
South Korean Contractor Shows Signs of Possible Violation at Road Project
A $27 million road in the central province of Thanh Hoa built by a South Korean contractor using fund borrowed from the South Korean government is in disrepair shortly after construction stopped, the VIR reported, citing newswire phapluatplus.vn.
The road was part of the project for socio-economic development of Thanh Hoa city with the Thanh Hoa People’s Committee as the investor. Construction started in April 2012 and finished in April 2014. The contractor is Kukdong Sambo, a consortium between two South Korean companies namely Kukdong Engineering & Construction and Sambo Engineering Co. Ltd.
Hai Phong Remains Attractive to Foreign Investors
The northern city of Hai Phong has so far attracted approximately US$2.26 billion in investments, including $1.8 billion in foreign direct investment (FDI), into its industrial zones (IZs) and economic zones (EZs).
Investment capital inflows to the city’s IZs and EZs has increased significantly in recent years thanks to its improved infrastructure, effective overseas and domestic investment promotion activities and the attractive investment climate, Deputy Head of the Hai Phong EZ Authority Mai Xuan Hoa told the Dau Tu (Investment) newspaper.
Last year, the city-based IZs and EZs alone lured $869 million in FDI, making up 87% of the total FDI registered in the city. They also attracted more than 10.49 trillion dong ($466 million) in domestic direct investment, up 31% year-on-year.
Vietnam, EU Reach Wood Product Deal
Vietnam and the EU last week reached important agreements during their fifth round of negotiations on the Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA) on Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade.
The VPA on Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade aims to ensure that all Vietnamese wood products exported to EU countries are of legal origin.
Once in effect, the agreement is expected to boost Vietnam’s wood processing and export industry, allowing for sustainable growth and market expansion.
Local Agro Firms Urged to Study EU Regulations
Vietnamese firms involved in fishery and agricultural products were urged to study the sanitary and phytosanitary measures (SPS) of the European Union (EU) markets to optimize opportunities for both sides.
This would help them cope with impending free trade deals and expand their exporter base.
The compliance to SPS was a pre-requisite for exporters of fishery products, vegetables and fruits to penetrate the EU markets smoothly, amid the impending Vietnam - EU free trade agreement (FTA
), which promised to be beneficial to Vietnamese firms due to the elimination of a number of tariff lines, said Nguyen Tu Cuong from the Vietnam Fisheries Society.
Vietnam Sells $11 Billion in G-bonds via HNX Last Year
The Vietnamese government sold a combined 249.6 billion (roughly $11 billion) worth of government bonds via the Hanoi Stock Exchange (HNX) last year, up 3.7% from 2014.
The HNX and the State Treasury of Vietnam will coordinate efforts to boost G-bond issuance this year, the Vietnam News Agency reported. The HNX plans to complete a scheme to develop the local corporate bond market that is expected to be operated in 2017.
The Finland-Vietnam Innovation Partnership Program Phase 2 (IPP2) will continue to provide funding for startup ecosystem developers in Vietnam this year, in a bid to encourage their innovation and entrepreneurship, Tran Thi Thu Huong, director of IPP2, said at the Final Demo Day in Ho Chi Minh City last weekend.
The program will coordinate will universities and education institutions in Vietnam to implement the Core Curriculum on innovation and startup, she added.
Vietnam will need between $40 billion and $50 billion to develop its transport infrastructure network in the 2016-2020 period, said Deputy Transport Minister Nguyen Ngoc Dong, adding that the private sector will have a key role.
Vietnam’s consumer price index (CPI), a gauge of inflation, in January has been flat in comparison with a month earlier as gasoline prices were slashed twice during the month with a combined 1,000 dong ($0.04) a liter, according to the General Statistics Office (GSO).
Nine out of the 11 goods and service categories saw their prices up in the month, with prices of the education services increased the most, by 0.89% month-on-month.