[Round-up] Egypt's President Eyes $1 Billion in Trade on Vietnam Visit, Banks Allowed to Provide Services for Casino Business

Tuan Minh

19:56 06/09/2017

BizLIVE - Vietnam and Egypt agreed Wednesday to nearly triple trade to $1 billion including with ship-building and IT contracts. Commercial banks will be allowed to trade and provide foreign exchange services related to the casino business from next month.

[Round-up] Egypt's President Eyes $1 Billion in Trade on Vietnam Visit, Banks Allowed to Provide Services for Casino Business

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi on Sept. 6 started a two-day visit -- the first ever by an Egyptian leader -- to Vietnam.

Egypt's President Eyes $1 Billion in Trade on Vietnam Visit
Vietnam and Egypt agreed Wednesday to nearly triple trade to $1 billion including with ship-building and IT contracts, as Egypt seeks to kickstart its sputtering economy and forge ties with fast-growing Asian nations, AFP reported.
"We discussed means to reinforce bilateral ties in many areas, in particular in economics, especially in light of Vietnam's achievements in the fields of industry and commerce," Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, who is in Hanoi for a two-day visit, told reporters.
Vietnam to Serve 13 Million Foreign Tourists in 2017
Vietnam’s tourism sector is likely to fulfill the target set by Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc of welcoming 13 million international visitors in 2017, according to the Vietnam News Agency.
Vietnam served more than 8.47 million foreign tourists in the first eight months of this year and grossed 335.8 trillion dong ($14.7 billion) in revenue, year-on-year increases of 29.7% and 26.7%, respectively.
BMW Recall Bikes in Vietnam
BMW has recalled all 79 of its Motorrad line R1200GS and R1200GS Adventure motorcycles sold through Euro Auto, BMW’s official distributor in Vietnam, due to a faulty suspension system.
According to the Vietnam Register (VR), any motorcycle of the two models under production codes 0A01, 0A02 and 0A32, manufactured between November 2013 and June 2017 at the BMW factory in Aktiengesellschaft, Germany, is subject to the recall, but is only eligible for repair and inspection if it was sold by Euro Auto in Vietnam.
Foreign Websites Dominate Vietnam’s Online Tourism Market
According to the Viet Nam e-Commerce Association, online tourism was growing rapidly and might generate opportunities for the tourism industry to make breakthroughs. However, majority of the international tourists to Vietnam used services provided by the foreign booking websites, and even local tourists tended to make their bookings through foreign platforms, rather than the local ones, the association noted.
Vietnamese online travel agency gotadi.com said that the online room booking sector was dominated by foreign platforms, adding that two of them — Agoda and Booking — were together estimated to account for more than 80% of the online hotel booking market. They accounted for bookings made by both the Vietnamese tourists travelling abroad, as well as those travelling domestically, and for foreign tourists coming to Vietnam.
Commercial Banks Allowed to Provide Services for Casino Business
Commercial banks will be allowed to trade and provide foreign exchange services related to the casino business from next month.
This information was stated under Circular No10/2017/TT-NHNN on the management of foreign exchange for the casino business, which will come into effect from October 15 this year, VNA reported.
Regina Miracle Project Bolsters Investment to $500 Million in Vietnam
The Regina Miracle International Vietnam Project has increased its investment capital to $500 million from $350 million in a bid to boost its capacity to produce clothing, according to VNA.
The project, invested by Regina Miracle International of Hong Kong (China), received investment certification in 2014 with total registered capital of $150 million at the Vietnam-Singapore Industrial Park based in the northern port city of Hai Phong.
Vinacomin Mines 24.58 Million Tons of Coal in 8 Months
Vietnam National Coal and Mineral Industries Group (Vinacomin) has produced 24.58 million tons of coal in the first eight months of the year, accounting for 68.3% of the annual plan.
Of the total output, 21.38 million tons were consumed domestically while 866,000 tons were exported, raking in over 35.3 trillion dong ($1.55 billion) in revenue.
Binh Duong Calls For Investment in Less Labor-Intensive Industries
The southern province of Binh Duong will focus on attracting investment in hi-tech, less labor-intensive and environmentally friendly industries in the time ahead, said Chairman of the provincial People’s Committee Tran Thanh Liem at a meeting with CEO of South Korea’s Sae-A group James Ha on September 5.
Liem noted his province will enlarge existing industrial parks and build new ones to welcome more foreign investors, thus expanding the total industrial park area to 14,000ha by 2020.
Vietnam’s Land Use Efficiency Remains Low
Land use efficiency in cities in Vietnam remains low due to delayed projects, unused houses and improper land use planning, according to experts.
Chairman of Vietnam Construction Association Tran Ngoc Hung said that on average, every square kilometer of urban land in Vietnam was used by about 2,100 people, while in other Asian countries, the rate was about 10,000 people per square kilometer.
The government-run State Capital Investment Corp (SCIC) expects to sell another 3.33% stake of Vietnam Dairy Products JS (Vinamilk), the largest firm by market capitalization in the country, for 7.443 trillion dong ($327 million), higher than the previous estimate, Reuters reported.
SCIC, the Vietnamese government’s investment arm, plans to sell 48.33 million shares or a 3.33% stake at 154,000 dong ($6.78) each, according to a document by Vietnam’s Steering Committee for Enterprise Innovation and Development dated August 30.
The Vietnamese stock market has been the only one among Asian emerging and frontier peers that has attracted foreign inflows every month this year, data of Bloomberg showed.
The country’s equities are in a “sweet spot” due to falling interest rates, rising foreign direct investment, credit growth and reasonable valuations, said Thomas Hugger, chief executive officer at Asia Frontier Capital Ltd. in Hong Kong.
Profit of banks in Vietnam in the first seven months of this year reached a combined 41 trillion dong ($1.8 billion), rising 59.7% from the corresponding period of 2016, driven by faster credit growth and the net interest margin (NIM) improving to 2.9% from 2.7% earlier, according to the National Financial Supervisory Commission.
Non-performing loans (NPLs) at commercial banks in Vietnam were estimated at 157 trillion dong ($6.91 billion) as of June 30, 2017, up 21.5% from the end of 2016, the National Financial Supervisory, the government’s financial watchdog, has said in a report.
The NPLs accounted for 2.9% of total credit in the Vietnamese banking system at that time, higher than 2.6% reported for December 2016, the commission added.