[Round-up] Vietnam Posts $800 Million Trade Deficit, Central Highlands Aims for $10 Billion in Investment

Tuan Minh

23:28 14/03/2017

BizLIVE - Vietnam reported a trade deficit of $800 million in the first two months of this year. The Central Highlands region is expected to attract more than $10.1 billion worth of investment in the period of 2016-2020.

[Round-up] Vietnam Posts $800 Million Trade Deficit, Central Highlands Aims for $10 Billion in Investment

Vietnam reported a trade deficit of $800 million in the first two months of this year. Photo: hsbc.com

Vietnam Posts $800 Million Trade Deficit in Jan-Feb
Vietnam reported a trade deficit of $800 million in the first two months of this year, according to customs data.
The country earned $27.43 trillion dong from export, up 15.8% year-on-year in the two-month period, while spending $28.23 billion on import, up 23.3%.
Vietnam, Angola Eye IT, Telecoms Cooperation
Vietnam aims to become a major and reliable partner to Angola in IT and telecommunications, Minister of Information and Communications Truong Minh Tuan told his Angolan counterpart, José Cavarlho de Rocha, at a meeting on March 13.
The minister emphasized that Vietnam aims to develop IT and telecommunication corporations that extend beyond national boundaries to become international with larger capital and higher standards in technology and management.
Development Fund Offers Financial Aid to SMEs
The Small- and Medium-sized Enterprise (SME) Development Fund of the Ministry of Industry and Trade has launched financial aid packages for 2017 to continue assisting the firms which make up 97% of Vietnam’s total businesses, the Vietnam News Agency (VNA) reported.
The support program for SMEs’ innovation has total funding of 100 billion dong ($4.38 million). It provides a maximum loan of 10 billion dong ($438,500) and allows a 24-month grace period for the original loan.
Bright Prospects for Steel Firms despite Challenges
Vietnam’s listed steel companies can achieve higher growth in 2017 despite a volatile and predictable international market if they optimize operations and exploit missing links in the sector’s supply chain, VNA reported, citing experts as saying on March 13.
Given recent international developments, global markets are likely to exhibit some signs of volatility and instability, stemming from uncertain U.S. policies under the Trump administration, the slowdown of China’s economy and the Britain’s exit from the European Union, said Dang Tran Hai Dang, deputy head of market research at the VietinBank Securities Company.
Second Vietnam Motor Show to be Held in Hanoi
A wide range of motorcycle models provided by the world’s leading producers will be on display at an area of 10,000 square meters during the Vietnam Motorcycle Show 2017 (VMCS 2017) scheduled for May 4-7 in Hanoi.
The show, the second of its kind to be held by the Vietnam Association of Motorcycle Manufacturers (VAMM), will gather famous brand names from official suppliers including Honda, Piaggio, Yamaha, SYM and Suzuki as well as some imported complete built units such as Benelli, Ducati, Kawasaki, Peugeot and Harley Davidson.
Vietnam, South Korea Seek Cooperation in Renewable Energy
The Vietnam Energy Association (VEA) joined hands with the association of energy storage industry development (KEIDA) from South Korea to organize an international conference on new technologies in power and renewable energy in Hanoi on March 14.
VEA Chairman Tran Viet Ngai said that as South Korea is the third major economy in the Asia - Pacific with a developed energy industry, the conference will offer opportunities for businesses of two countries to seek partners and cooperation in technology transfer.
Energy Labels Made Compulsory for Certain Equipment, Vehicles
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has issued a decision requiring compulsory energy labeling of four groups of equipment and vehicles namely home appliances, office and commercial appliances, industrial appliances and transport vehicles, according to VNA.
According to a 2011 Government Decree, most energy-consuming products are required to carry energy rating labels before being sold on the market. These labels provide consumers with information about power consumption and the products’ energy efficiency.
Japanese Firm Wants to Join Vietnam’s Tea Industry
Japan’s Sasaki Seicha Company has surveyed Vietnam’s tea industry for a year and realized that this is a market not to be missed, the firm’s General Director Iwasaki Masao was quoted by VNA as saying.
The Japanese firm wants to work with Vietnamese partners to export local tea products abroad, he noted.
Central Highlands Aims for over $10 Billion in Investment in 2016-2020
The Central Highlands region is expected to attract more than 230 trillion dong ($10.1 billion) worth of investment in the period of 2016-2020.
Of the figure, 51 trillion dong will come from the state budget, 7.5 trillion dong from government bonds and the remaining from domestic and foreign businesses, according to the Steering Committee for the region.
Foreign investors net bought 35.2 billion dong ($1.54 million) worth of Vietnamese shares on March 14 as offshore exchange-traded funds (ETFs) restructure their portfolios this week.
On the Ho Chi Minh City Stock Exchange (HOSE), they net purchased a value of 31 billion dong ($1.36 million), extending their buying streak since the start of this year although the U.S. Fed will likely raise rates by 25 basis points this month.
Vietnam’s imports from South Korea reached $5.84 billion in the first two months of this year, representing a rise of 40.3% from a year earlier and accounting for 20.7% of the country’s total import turnover, according to the General Department of Vietnam Customs.
With such a growth, South Korea has become the second import market for Vietnam after China, as a result of the South Korea-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement which came into force in December 2015.
The central coastal city of Da Nang, with a score of 70 points, takes the lead among the most competitive localities in Vietnam in terms of business facilitation in 2016 for the fourth year in a row, says the annual Provincial Competitiveness Index (PCI) report.
2016 also marks the seventh time the city tops the rankings since the first PCI report in 2006, according to the report released by the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) on Tuesday.

TUAN MINH

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