VIETNAM BUSINESS NEWS JANUARY 8
China reopens one more border gate with Vietnam
China has announced the reopening of Pingmeng border gate with Vietnam’s Soc Giang border gate in Cao Bang province from 10:00 on January 7.
The border gate was reopened just one day after the first meeting of the Working Group on Vietnam-China Trade Facilitation, the Vietnamese Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT)’s Asia-Africa Market Department said.
Earlier, the Tra Linh (Vietnam) - Longbang (China) border gate had also been reopened.
Minister stresses flexible combination of fiscal, monetary policies
As the COVID-19 pandemic is predicted to linger and affect the State budget revenue as well as spending on the pandemic combat, it is necessary to flexibly combine fiscal and monetary policies to keep macro-economic stability, said Minister of Finance Ho Duc Phoc.
Phoc said the Ministry of Finance (MoF) suggested the Government propose the National Assembly allocate 10 trillion VND (over 439 million USD) in the health sector’s frequent expenditure from the 2022 central budget for COVID-19 prevention and control.
It also recommended 20.5 trillion VND from the central budge reserve (about 2.5 percent of the total central budget spending) and 1.7 trillion VND from the national reserve be earmarked for the COVD-19 fight, settlement of disaster consequences, epidemic prevention and control, along with other important tasks.
The MoF will base on the pandemic situation to use those resources from the central budget and combine them with legal financial sources of localities to meet demand in reality, the minister said.
He noted to achieve the twin targets of combating the pandemic and developing the economy, closely combining fiscal and monetary policies is all the more important so as to guarantee resources for the COVID-19 fight and social security, and cut down input costs for production and business activities.
Rubber exports likely to reach US$3.5 billion in 2022
With optimistic signs being recorded in terms of rubber exports last year, the local rubber industry is anticipated to rake in US$3.5 billion from exports in the year ahead, according to predictions made by the Ministry of Industry and Trade.
Last year witnessed Vietnam gross US$3.3 billion from exporting 1.97 million tonnes of rubber, representing a year-on-year rise of 12.9% in volume and 39% in value.
This robust growth last year in Vietnamese rubber exports can largely be attributed to high export growth to markets such as China, India, the Republic of Korea, the United States, Indonesia, Turkey, the Netherlands, the Czech Republic, and Canada.
According to the latest report released by the Association of Natural Rubber Producing Countries (ANRPC), the global shortage of natural rubber, coupled with a sharp increase in oil prices, is expected to create a boom in rubber prices until the end of the first quarter of the year.
FDI in southern key economic region rises sharply despite COVID-19
Last year saw the southern province of Binh Duong rank fourth nationwide in terms of FDI attraction with 64 new projects capitalised at more than US$2 billion until November, trailing behind Ho Chi Minh City and Long An province.
The locality has so far lured 4,011 FDI projects with a total registered capital of US$37 billion from 65 countries and territories around the world.
Meanwhile, Ho Chi Minh City, which was hit hard by the prolonged COVID-19 outbreak, ranked third in FDI attraction with nearly US$3.74 billion in capital, making up nearly 12% of the country's total FDI. By the end of November 2021, Japanese investors alone had injected US$7.41 billion into 3,218 projects throughout the southern metropolis.
Elsewhere, the Mekong Delta province of Long An ranked second with over US$3.84 billion, accounting for 12.3% of the country’s overall FDI.
Vietnamese tea enjoys surge in Taiwanese market
Vietnam remained the major tea supplier for the Taiwanese market as it exported 16,970 tonnes of tea worth US$26.7 million during the initial 11 months of last year, up 8.7% in volume and 7.8% in value year on year according to data released by Taiwan (China)’s Customs Administration.
The average import price of tea in this market also edged up by 3% reaching US$2,623 per tonne.
Most notably, Taiwan represented Vietnam’s largest black tea consumer, accounting for 43.8% of its total import volume of black tea. The import of Vietnamese green tea also made up 82.1% of its total import volume of the product.
However, the proportion of tea imports from Vietnam accounted for 55.2% of the territory’s total import volume during the reviewed period, a drop of 1.2 percentage points against last year’s corresponding period.
Shrimp exports forecast to reach US$5.6 billion by 2025
The Viet Nam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) expects that shrimp exports will reach a turnover of US$5.6 billion by 2025, with an annual growth of 9 per cent.
Ho Quoc Luc, former chairman of VASEP, said that the target was completely grounded, although the growth rate of 9 per cent per year would require hard work.
There was an assessment of the possibility of shrimp export turnover reaching $10 billion by 2025 in 2017, said Luc.
However, recent complicated developments showed that this level of striving was too high and inappropriate, he added.
Specifically, in terms of products, shrimp enterprises would flexibly penetrate each market according to their advantages and limit the strengths of their competitors, he said.
Regarding the market, he recommended enterprises determine to maintain the main markets including the US, Japan, and the EU, and at the same time focus on potential markets such as China, South Korea, the UK, Australia and Canada.
TPBank posts US$263 million pre-tax profit in 2021
TPBank posted a pre-tax profit of more than VND6 trillion (US$263.3 million) in 2021, increasing 40 per cent from the previous year.
By the end of 2021, its total assets reached VND295 trillion, representing 42 per cent year-on-year increase and surpassing 17 per cent of the set target. Its total operating income (TOI) rose by 30 per cent from the previous year. Its bad debt was controlled at 0.9 per cent.
The bank last year mobilised more than VND262 trillion, increasing VND77 trillion from 2020, of which the capital mobilisation mainly came from deposits of organisations and individuals.
In addition to profit from lending activities, the bank’s net income from services also rose by 65 per cent from the previous year, reaching VND1.5 trillion.
Its market capitalisation reached over $2.8 billion by the end of last year.
Market capitalisation on HOSE hits nearly 93 per cent of GDP
Market capitalisation on the Ho Chi Minh Stock Exchange (HoSE) rose more than 42 per cent year-on-year to VND5.8 quadrillion (US$254.83 billion) by the end of 2021, accounting for 92.77 per cent of the previous year’s GDP.
During 2021, 184.32 billion stocks were traded on HoSE, worth a total of over VND5.39 quadrillion, up 118.68 per cent and 244.51 per cent, respectively, against 2020. An average of 737.29 million shares, worth nearly VND21.6 trillion, were traded on the southern bourse per session.
As of the end of last year, 533 securities codes had been listed on HoSE, including 404 stocks, three close-end fund certificates, eight exchange-traded funds (ETFs), 113 covered warrants (CW), and five bonds. The number of shares listed on the bourse exceeded 120.5 billion.
Export of dragon fruit to China by sea freight
Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Tran Thanh Nam suggested that Binh Thuan, Tien Giang and Long An provinces join hands to promote dragon fruit exports to China by sea freight.
According to responsible agencies in the South Central and Mekong Delta, farmers are currently going to harvest the fruit with a large quantity of 300,000 tons in Binh Thuan, Long An, and Tien Giang provinces.
For a long time, most of Vietnam's dragon fruit is exported to China. But now, due to China's tightening of imports to implement the "Zero Covid" policy, customs clearance has been suspended. Only a few border gates are still in operation, but they mainly clear raw goods, minimizing fresh and frozen goods, seafood, especially fruit.
On January 5, officials in several large border gates in the northern provinces of Lang Son and Quang Ninh issued notices asking businesses and container truck owners in the southern region to stop or limit the delivery of goods to the northern border gates.
Vietnam Airlines first launches e-commerce platforms
National flag carrier Vietnam Airlines on January 7 launched two e-commerce platforms VNAMALL and VNAMAZING to offer affordable, high-quality services to customers.
Vietnam Airlines' VNAMALL offers goods and services in both aviation and non-aviation sectors
VNAMAZING is a trading platform that provides online travel services, such as domestic and international tours, and airfare - hotel combos.
The product has been developed by Vietnam Airlines and many big brands such as Vinpearl and Sungroup to provide passengers with a variety of choices at attractive prices, contributing to stimulating tourism demand after the COVD-19 pandemic.
Meanwhile, VNAMALL provides a wide range of goods and services in both aviation and non-aviation sectors.
Vietnam’s labour market shows signs of recovery
In the final three months of 2021, the labour force was 50.7 million people from 15 years old and above, up 1.7 million from the previous quarter, while the rate of labour participation was 67.7%, a rise of 2.1 percentage points.
The number of workers with informal jobs rose by 1.3 million to 19.4 million in the fourth quarter while people facing job shortages fell by 381,000 against the previous three months.
According to the GSO report, the average income in the October-December period rose by 139,000 VND to 5.3 million VND (233 USD) but dropped by 624,000 VND compared to the same period last year.
The number of people in the working age without jobs fell by 113,000 to 1.6 million.
Ho Chi Minh City honours outstanding companies of 2021
The Ho Chi Minh City Department of Industry and Trade held a ceremony on January 6 to honour 30 enterprises with outstanding products and services in 2021.
Based on a set of ten criteria, the jury selected 30 enterprises with outstanding products and services to present with the award.
The companies receiving the award included Cholimex Food, Masan Consumer, Vissan, Duy Tan Plastics, Van Thanh Mattress, and Binh Dien Fertilizer.
Haiphong to develop 15 new IPs
The northern city of Haiphong plans to develop an additional 15 industrial parks (IPs) with a total area of 6,200 hectares in the 2021-2025 period, according to the municipal Economic Zone Authority.
At present, procedures to establish six IPs covering a combined area of nearly 2,800 hectares are being completed. Of these, the Xuan Cau IP project has received the prime minister’s approval.
Dossiers on five remaining projects, including those to develop Nam Trang Cat, Thuy Nguyen, Tien Thanh, the expanded Trang Due and Giang Bien II IPs, have been submitted to the Ministry of Planning and Investment.
In addition, nine other IP projects covering nearly 3,500 hectares are being planned, including Cau Cuu, An Hung-Dai Ban, Vinh Quang, Ngu Phuc-Kien Thuy, Sao Mai, Vinh Quang shipbuilding, Cai Trap Island, Nam Cau Kien (second phase) and An Hoa.
VinFast to stop manufacturing gasoline cars in late 2022
VinFast will stop manufacturing gasoline-powered vehicles at the end of 2022 to move toward becoming the electric automaker this year, the Vietnamese automaker announced at the 2022 CES, taking place in the United States.
After ceasing the production of gasoline-powered cars, the automaker will focus solely on manufacturing electric vehicles.
The cessation is aimed at making VinFast cars all electric at the end of 2022, said Le Thi Thu Thuy, vice chairman of Vingroup and CEO of VinFast Global.
Apart from renaming two of its electric SUV models, VFe35 and VFe36, into VF8 and VF9, at the event, the world’s biggest consumer electronics and technology expo, VinFast also launched three new models, VF5, VF6 and VF7. The date these models will go on sale has yet to be announced.
Vietnam’s 2021 public debt under control: Finance Ministry
Vietnam kept its public debt under control last year at 43.7% of gross domestic product (GDP), way below the 60% cap, according to the Ministry of Finance.
Nguyen Xuan Thao, deputy director of the Department of Debt Management and External Finance under the Finance Ministry, said during a recent meeting that all debt indicators of Vietnam last year were within the safety limit set by the National Assembly.
In particular, public debt, Government debt and foreign debt were equivalent to 43.7%, 39.5% and 39% of GDP, respectively.
Last year, Vietnam signed 12 loan agreements worth a total of more than US$958 million under the advisory of the Department of Debt Management and External Finance.
The country also completed negotiations or the technical transfer for 11 other loan deals worth a combined US$924 million.
Besides, the Ministry of Finance adjusted or extended 22 framework agreements.
SAV proposes cutting North-South expy cost by over VND16 trillion
The State Audit of Vietnam has proposed cutting the estimated costs of 12 sections of the 729-kilometer North-South expressway project in the 2021-2025 period by VND16.33 trillion.
SAV has calculated the investment cost of each kilometer of the expressway at VND152.9 billion, lower than the VND175 billion, excluding the cost for site clearance, proposed by the Government, the local media reported.
SAV’s calculation was based on the investment figures in previous projects. For example, the investment in the 101-kilometer Vinh Hao-Phan Thiet section was nearly VND10.9 trillion, or VND107.5 billion per kilometer.
In addition, the 78.5-kilometer Cam Lam-Vinh Hao section and the 100-kilometer Phan Thiet-Dau Giay section require an investment of VND9.6 trillion and VND12.6 trillion, or VND122.6 billion and VND125.8 billion per kilometer, respectively.
Credit institutions predict higher credit risks in H1
Credit institutions warn of a continuous increase in credit risks in the first half of 2022, according to a survey on credit trends by the State Bank of Vietnam’s Forecast and Statistics Department.
The survey was conducted from December 3-15, 2021 on all credit institutions and foreign bank branches in Vietnam, with the response rate being 94 percent.
According to them, the increase rate of credit risks in the first half of this year will be lower than that in the last six months of the previous year. The figure in the whole year 2022 is forecast to decrease slightly against 2021.
Most credit institutions upbeat about business performance in 2022
A majority of credit institutions are optimistic about their business performance in 2022, according to the latest survey by the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV).
The SBV’s survey on business trends of credit institutions in the first quarter of 2022 released this week showed 95 percent of credit institutions expect their pre-tax profit to grow this year, while 3 percent expect it to be unchanged and 2 percent are worried about decreasing profits.
Credit institutions believe their profits recovered and improved significantly in the fourth quarter of 2021, thus raising expectations for an improvement over the entire year.
As for Q1 2022 alone, 49.5 percent of credit institutions forecast their business results to grow compared to the fourth quarter of 2021.
Vietnam to diversify dragon fruit markets
As vegetarians make up a large proportion of Indian population and people in the country consume imported dragon fruit at weddings, it is a huge potential market for Vietnam’s dragon fruit, according to trade counsellor Bui Trung Thuong.
This statement was made in a forum “Linking production and consumption of dragon fruits” jointly held by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) and other agencies on January 6.
Thuong said bilateral trade between Vietnam and India had risen steadily in recent years, from 5.1 billion USD in 2016 to 11.2 billion USD in 2021, and is expected to top 13 billion USD this year.
Vietnam’s dragon fruit export to India went up quickly during 2019-2020, reaching over 11,000 tonnes and fetching 9.86 million USD.
However, the fruit’s export in 2020-2021 experienced a drop of 25 percent due to the pandemic. On top of that, India successfully sold its first batch of dragon fruit to UAE in June 2021, posing a competitive challenge.
Fifth Vietnam Rice Festival underway in Vinh Long