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Vietsovpetro launches two support sets of Dragon oilfield
Vietsovpetro launches two support sets of Dragon oilfield hinh anh 1
Vietnam-Russia oil and gas joint venture Vietsovpetro has announced that it launched the sets of support for RC-RB1 and RC-10 rigs of the Dragon oilfield in June.

According to Vietsovpetro, both sets have been launched ahead of schedule. The base of RC-10 rig weighs over 1,700 tonnes, while that of RC-RB1 weighs over 1,400 tonnes.

The company is exerting efforts to put RC-RB1 and RC-10 rigs into operation in the fourth quarter of this year.

Vietsovpetro is assigned to exploit over 2.9 million tonnes of oil equivalent and 65.4 million cu.m of natural gas this year. The operation of the oil rigs as scheduled is hoped to raise the venture’s target output for 2022 and the years to come.

Aquatic exports spike 40% in H1

Vietnam’s aquatic exports spiked 40% year-on-year to reach nearly 5.8 billion USD in the first half of 2022, the Vietnamese Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) has reported.

The country earned more than 3.2 billion USD from aquatic exports in the second quarter of 2022, an increase of 36% from the same period last year.

According to VASEP, shipments of shrimp picked up 7% – a quite modest pace – to total 450 million USD as a result of input shortages. Though, the sector experienced a strong growth of 33% in H1 to bring home 2.3 billion USD, accounting for 40% of the total seafood exports.

Several producers have raised the shipments of high value-added processed shrimp products, instead of raw ones, to major markets like Japan, the US and the EU as a way to address input shortages.

VASEP anticipated that aquatic exports will be likely to reach 10 billion USD this year, up about 12% from 2021.

Vietnam seeks ways to step up food exports to African market

According to the Vietnam Trade Promotion Agency under the Ministry of Industry and Trade, African countries' demand for food, especially rice, is high and diverse. Therefore, Vietnam is string to seek partnerships to boost food exports to the African market.

Statistics showed that in the first five months of 2022, Vietnam shipped 2.38 million USD worth of the products to Algeria. Rice was the major export product of Vietnam to Africa, which accounted for 20 percent of total export revenue generated from the market, which is also a promising land for Vietnamese coffee and peppercorn.

Each year, African countries spend about 750 million USD on importing coffee. Vietnam has been one of the five major suppliers of the product in Africa.

Cement prices rise, profits to fall
Mounting fuel and coal costs have been added to cement producers' bills, leaving them no choice but to increase prices.

Price adjustments can be observed in almost all producers, with none willing to hold down prices to see profits eroded. Prices have been adjusted from VND50,000 to VND140,000 per tonne across the sector.

Trung Son Cement increased p30 Cement and PCB 40 Cement by VND90,000 per tonne on June 10. Northern Cement Trading followed suit with price rises of VND70,000 per tonne.

Southern Region Cong Thanh Cement Trading and the Tan Quang Cement got in on the act with price rises of between VND50,000 and VND140,000 per tonne on June 15.

VICEM Ha Long JSC. did likewise five days later, announcing price rises between VND60,000 and VND80,000 per tonne.

The latest price adjustments were made on June 25 by Vissai Ha Nam JSC., the Song Lam Cement JSC., and the Xuan Thanh Cement JSC. They announced price rises of VND60,000 per tonne.

Experts believe that domestic consumption of cement will remain stable despite higher prices, as Viet Nam has been stepping up the disbursement of public money for key transport projects.

Ha Noi, HCM City foster tourism links with north-central region

Tourism links would boost activity in each locality, contribute to the promotion of local tourism brands in the domestic market and enhance the competitiveness of Vietnamese tourism in the international market, vice chairwoman of the HCM City People's Committee Phan Thi Thang said at a recent forum on linking tourism development.

The forum was held in Nghe An Province last Friday to foster tourism links between Ha Noi, HCM City and six north-central provinces of Nghe An, Ninh Binh, Thanh Hoa, Ha Tinh, Quang Binh and Quang Tri.

According to Nguyen Duc Trung, chairman of Nghe An Province’s People’s Committee, the province plays the role of a tourism connection centre in the region, with its favourable geographical location, and diverse tourism potential.

Creating tourism linkages between the north-central region and the two most popular travel destinations of Ha Noi and HCM City is expected to help exchange customer resources, develop strategies to attract more investment in tourism development, make changes to the face of tourism in each locality, and improve the quality of tourism facilities of the whole region.

Truong Duc Hung, deputy general director of Saigon Tourism Corporation (Saigontourist Group), said it was necessary to promote linkages between provinces in the region to form inter-regional destinations and create unique products such as cultural tourism, eco-tourism, or sea tourism.

At the forum, 29 tourism businesses from Ha Noi, HCM City and the north-central region signed agreements to link tourism development.

Real estate market slowing down, experts divided on bubble risk

According to a report by the Department of Housing and Real Estate Market Management under the Ministry of Construction, land prices, especially in localities planning or developing infrastructure saw whopping increases.

The moves to control credit flow into the real estate sector and land lot split were cooling the market, with falling liquidity but prices staying at high levels.

A report by real estate portal showed that searches for property on sale via the portal in the first five months of this year dropped by 11 per cent against the same period last year.

Nguyen Quoc Anh, deputy director general of, said the market was slowing down significantly with interest in buying a property decreasing by 9e per cent.

The number of listings for sale increased by 22 per cent, especially land by 38 per cent, reflecting that investors and trading floors were struggling and the easy period was over, he said.

Quoc Anh said that many banks had run out of credit room for real estate loans, together with increases in taxes on real estate transfers, which was making profits less attractive. Therefore, investors were more cautious when putting down their money.

According to Dang Hoai Nam, director of Tien Phuoc Real Estate Joint Stock Company, the market was slowing down but wasn't frozen, providing opportunities for products with real value. “The slowdown is a wake-up call for investors and an opportunity to purify the market,” he said.

Nam pointed out that products which were in strategic locations with synchronous infrastructure and adequate facilities and services would be more attractive to buyers, especially amid a shortage of quality products in rapidly developing urban areas such as HCM City.

Su Ngoc Khuong, senior director of Savills Viet Nam, said that the market was facing low supply and high prices, resulting in limited liquidity, predicting that the trend would continue till the end of this year.

According to financial and banking expert Le Xuan Nghia, while the market was facing a serious shortage of supply due to legal problems hitting housing development projects, the tightening of capital flow into the real estate market, including credit and corporate bonds, would worsen the situation.

The Viet Nam Association of Realtors said that rising house prices but low liquidity was a signal that the market was in a partial bubble. Notably, house prices also increased following land prices and established new levels in many places but the transaction volume remained modest.

Vietnamese firms seek investment opportunities in South Africa

A group of businesses will leave Vietnam for several localities in in South Arica this September to sound out investment opportunities there, according to the Vietnam Trade Promotion Agency (Vietrade).

Priority will be given to businesses operating in the field of farm produce, food, and consumer goods.

They are to make fact-finding trips to Johannesburg, Pretoria, Durban and Cape Town where they will attend a number of seminars aiming at ramping trade promotion, exploring business opportunities, conducting surveys on warehouses and working with key importers.

The Ministry of Industry and Trade reported Vietnam's exports to Africa last year surged 20.45% to US$2.24 billion from the same period of 2020.

In the opening five months of this year, Vietnam's export turnover to Africa declined slightly 2.6% to US$1.15 billion year on year.

At present, rice is its key export item to Africa that accounts for 20% of the country’s total export turnover to Africa.

Experts pointed out that Vietnamese enterprises can boost rice exports to Africa, especially to countries such as Ivory Coast, Ghana, and Mozambique amid the raging COVID-19 pandemic in the region.

Apart from rice, Africa also has a huge demand for coffee and pepper, as the region spends about US$750 million each year importing coffee products.

Currently, Vietnam is one of the five main suppliers of coffee to Africa, with its processed coffee brands such as Trung Nguyen and King Coffee becoming popular with local consumers.

Lobster exports increase by 30 times in first half

Vietnam raked in an estimated US$130 million from exporting lobsters in the first six months of 2022, seeing a 30 fold increase compared to the same period last year.

According to the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP), lobster exports to China reached a record high of over US$108 million in the first five months, or 29 times higher over the same period last year.

Meanwhile, Vietnam’s shrimp exports surged 33% year-on-year to US$2.3 billion in the first half of 2022, accounting for 40% of the country’s total seafood exports.

Small-sized-white-legged and frozen shrimps were still the most popular products in the period. However, some businesses also decided to increase the proportion of value-added processed shrimps to export to high-end markets such as Japan, the US, and the EU to overcome the scarcity of raw materials.

According to VASEP, exports of processed white-legged shrimps in the first half of this year increased by 17%, while exports of fresh/frozen shrimps rose by 21%. The export turnover of black tiger shrimps still edged up by 20% to more than US$300 million.

Vietnam’s strong economic recovery grabs international headlines

International media outlets have made an in-depth analysis of Vietnam’s strong economic recovery in the first half of the year, noting the local economy is gradually securing pre-COVID pandemic growth.

In its recently published article, Japan’s Nikkei Asia highlighted Vietnam’s robust export growth, especially of garments and textiles. The article said Vietnam’s garment and textile exports were projected to hit all-time high of US$22 billion in the first six months of the year, up 23% from a year earlier.

Meanwhile, Channels News Asia reported that the Vietnamese economy grew at the fastest pace for 11 years in the second quarter. It quoted the General Statistics Office of Vietnam, saying the national economy expanded by 7.72% in the second quarter and 6.42% in the first half of the year.

It also quoted the World Bank, saying Vietnam’s economic recovery "remains strong" despite uncertainties caused by the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict, COVID-19 lockdowns in China and inflationary pressure.

Dorsa Ti Madani, the World Bank's Chief Economist in Vietnam, attributed Vietnam's impressive growth to a big rebound in exports, the gradual recovery of domestic consumption and the lifting of COVID-19 restrictions.

Alain Cany, chairman of the European Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam (EuroCham), also praised Vietnam’s economic achievements, pointing to the fact that its economy performed better than regional peers, especially in the domestic manufacturing sector. He stressed that the government intervened quickly to reduce the environmental protection tax on fuels to help keep inflation under control.

In its article, newswire Borneo Bulletin described Vietnam’s foreign direct investment (FDI) attraction as a bright spot in the overall prosperous economic picture. Titled "Vietnam's economy is recovering strongly", Borneo Bulletin said the opening five months of the year saw Vietnam attract US$7.71 billion in FDI, up 7.8% compared to same period last year.

The article also outlined that Vietnam is required to exert a greater effort to enhance its competitiveness and retain FDI inflows.

Sharing the same perspective, Prof. David Daoice from Harvard University underlined the need to increase competitiveness to both retain and continue to attract FDI inflows by engaging deep in the global value chain amid the global trend of production shifting,

He revealed that Toyota has partnered with Vietnamese companies to purchase components for its automobile production while Apple also unveiled plans to move their iPad production line to Vietnam.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has recently forecast that Vietnam would surpass Malaysia, Philippines, abd Singapore to become the third largest economy in Southeast Asia with a GDP reaching more than US$571 billion by 2025.

Manufacturing sector ends the first half of 2022 in good health

The Vietnam Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) posted 54.0 points in June, down slightly from 54.7 points in May but still signalling a solid monthly improvement in the health of the sector. Business conditions have now strengthened in each of the past nine months, according to the latest PMI survey by S&P Global.

The Vietnamese manufacturing sector ended the first half of 2022 firmly in expansion mode as a lack of disruption from the pandemic supported demand and production.

Firms were also increasingly successful in efforts to hire additional staff, with the rate of job creation quickening to a new high.

Increased staffing capacity enabled firms to keep on top of workloads, with backlogs reduced for the second time in the past three months. Meanwhile, the shipping of finished items to customers meant that post-production inventories decreased again in June.

Further marked increases were seen in both output and new orders at the end of the second quarter, as relative market stability due to a lack of pandemic disruption enabled demand to grow.

Rates of expansion were particularly pronounced in the consumer goods category. Meanwhile, the growth of new export orders quickened to the fastest pace in four months, despite some reports that shipping difficulties had limited opportunities to export.

Input costs continued to rise sharply, with the rate of inflation quickening from that seen in May. A range of factors added to cost burdens, most notably higher gas and oil prices. Rising charges for shipping and freight and higher raw material prices were other factors.

Higher costs for energy and shipping, in particular, were behind a further increase in selling prices. The rate of inflation softened, but was still marked and well above the average since the data about inflation was collected in March 2011.

Continued supply-chain disruption was also a feature of the latest PMI survey, although lead times lengthened to a lesser extent than in May. Where delivery delays were reported, firms linked this to COVID-19 lockdowns in China, shipping issues, price rises, and material shortages.

Vietnam going for gold with Fortune Global 500 attraction

Vietnam targets to attract at least half of the 500 largest global corporations as ranked by Fortune Magazine to offer a presence and operations in this country.

The Fortune Global 500 goal is a highlight of Vietnam’s strategy for foreign investment cooperation for the 2021-2030 period.

At a conference on strengthening Vietnam-Japan cooperation and development organised in the northern province of Vinh Phuc last week, Masuoka Hiroyoshi, general director of Thang Long Industrial Park Company, said that the group is continuing to survey locations to develop industrial zones, following Thang Long I and II industrial parks (IPs) in Hanoi and the northern province of Hung Yen and Thang Long IP in the northern province of Vinh Phuc.

Intel Corporation, another Fortune Global 500 group, is making new moves. Earlier in June, CEO Patrick Gelsinger worked with the Ministry of Planning and Investment, likely related to the American group’s next phase of investment in Vietnam. The previous month, Keyvan Esfarjani, Intel executive vice president and global COO, met with Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh in the framework of his business trip to the United States.

The number of corporations on the Fortune Global 500 list investing in Vietnam is currently modest. Among those already here include Samsung, Foxconn, Ford, Mitsubishi, Microsoft, Siemens, Nestlé, HSBC, LG, Coca-Cola, and Heineken.

The race to hike interest rates is on

Adding 0.5-1 percentage point per annum to the interest rates they set for savings of six months or longer is what quite a few banks are doing. For example, when a customer deposits VND500 million or more, with a fixed interest rate of 5.3% per year for the six-month term, the actual rate recorded in the book shall be 5.8%. In case the amount is VND1 billion or larger, the real interest rate may rise to 5.9-6% per annum. The bigger the deposit, the bigger the addition to the interest rate. An extra one percentage point per year goes to savings of VND5 billion or more. When depositing VND100-200 million for nine or 12 months, customers may receive gifts in kind such as a set of tea cups, a set of drinking glasses, a raincoat, a thermos, an umbrella, etc.

Prior to the pandemic, the highest interest rate for 12-month savings was 7% per year. Now, many banks are keeping it at 6.7-6.9%, whereas some have lifted it to 7-7.1%, or even 7.5% a year. As for the interest rate for short-term deposits of less than six months, joint-stock credit institutions are applying the ceiling rate of 4% for all terms—one, two, three, four, and five months.

In addition to charging a little higher interest rate, some banks waive fees for transferring money to relatives abroad, and annual fees for opening international and domestic cards when customers deposit a fixed amount for 6-12 months. The longer the better. The 13-month savings term, having been suspended for a while, is now available again, with an interest rate much higher than that for the 12-month term.

The cyclical factor plays a role in the increase in the deposit rates banks are applying. Firstly, the capital mobilization target for the first half of the year must be achieved. Each bank assigns targets to their branches, urging them to speed up. Capital mobilization is one of the top criteria for bank employees to get bonuses and a pay raise. Secondly, certain banks may have gone overboard with lending, leading to the need to have an adequate amount of deposits to keep the loan-to-deposit ratio at a safe level according to regulations.

Those banks which have given out a lot of real estate loans, with the risk provisioning level for such loans at up to 250% (versus only 50% for loans to the five preferred areas), are more eager to entice deposits for refinancing and debt repayment extensions.

The rise in input interest rates is also due to other reasons. As soon as the U.S. Federal Reserve (Fed) hiked the federal funds rate by 0.75 percentage point, the overnight interest rate for the U.S. dollar on the interbank foreign currency market (where banks borrow from each other) picked up from 0.9% to 1.5% per annum, “outclassing” the overnight rate for the dong. Stable as the interbank dong interest rate has been since the beginning of June, it is not easy to arrange long-term loans since every lender requires collateral. The law does not stipulate collateral is a must for borrowing in the interbank market, but in the past, there have been cases where borrowers of six-month loans failed to fulfill their repayment obligations, making lenders extremely cautious when it comes to loans with a term calculated in months.

With regard to the exchange rate, the dong’s depreciation against the greenback has been faster for the past two weeks, as most currencies in the world are losing ground to the U.S. dollar and the dong is no exception. Since the beginning of the year, the dong has dwindled by some 1.5% against the U.S. dollar, with some predictions that the fall may be 2-2.5%, higher than the initial forecast of 1% given earlier this year. The depreciation of the dong is still less significant than that of other currencies in the region (most of which have declined more than 5%) and also slighter than that of major currencies such as the euro (down 7.67%), the yen (down 17.26%) and the pound (down 9.67%).

The State Bank of Vietnam has sold a considerable volume of foreign currency—US$7 billion according to RongViet Securities Corporation, and US$8 billion according to another securities company—in an attempt to stabilize the exchange market as long as the situation allows. This May, the trade balance turned from surplus to deficit. Vietnam’s exports may come under pressure as sea freight rates are soaring, and warehouses in Europe and the U.S. are now fully occupied (until new imports for Christmas and New Year’s Eve). Household items, electronics, garments, shoes, children’s toys, and wooden furniture are being dumped into the market, resulting in a drop in the import demand stateside as well as in Europe.

Work on Beltway No. 3 in HCMC area to begin earlier than planned

At least 70% of land to be cleared for Beltway No. 3, which will link HCMC, Dong Nai, Binh Duong and Long An, will be handed over in late 2022, so work on the project will start in June 2023, six months before the previous plan.

The leaders of the four southern localities on July 2 signed a detailed plan to develop the ring road project.

Tran Quang Lam, director of the HCMC Department of Transport, told the meeting with HCMC’s three neighboring provinces that after the National Assembly issued a resolution approving the project in mid-June, the city and the three provinces had quickly mapped out a plan to start work.

The HCMC government is in charge of the entire project, Lam said, adding that the city and the three provinces are speeding up site clearance so as to start handing over cleared land to the 76-kilometer-long beltway project in October.

Deputy Minister of Transport Le Dinh Tho asked the parties involved to expedite site clearance so that the beltway could be completed in October 2025. The ring road is set to be opened to traffic in 2026.

The beltway will be divided into eight components, with each city/province responsible for two, and require over VND75 trillion in investment. 

An Cuong Wood cuts deal with Japanese firm to provide products in U.S.

An Cuong Wood Working JSC on July 1 concluded a cooperation agreement with Sumitomo Forestry American, a subsidiary of Japan-based Sumitomo Forestry Group, to provide furniture for projects developed by Sumitomo Forestry America in the United States from 2022 onward.

The cooperation is expected to help An Cuong earn tens of millions of U.S. dollars per year.

Sumitomo Forestry America has invested billions of U.S. dollars in the U.S. market and owns many real estate and construction companies. It will launch thousands of housing products in the United States.

Yeah1 eyes 51% stake in multimedia firm

Yeah1 Group Corporation, whose YEG shares are listed on the Hochiminh Stock Exchange, has passed a plan to sell and acquire stakes in multiple firms, including buying shares of STV Group Multimedia Company.

Yeah1 looks set to buy almost 2.3 million shares, or a 51% stake, of STV Group Multimedia Company in the third quarter of this year to make STV Multimedia Company a subsidiary of Yeah1.

STV Group Multimedia Company was established in 2008, with its head office located in Hanoi’s Ba Dinh District. It mainly operates in television broadcasting.

Meanwhile, Yeah1 Group will sell about 1.5 million shares at Yeah1 Brand Name Development Corporation where the Group owns a 99% stake. Once the deal is done, Yeah1 Brand Name Development Corporation will be no longer a business arm of the Group.

Besides, Yeah1 will sell its entire stake in TNT Advertising Communication Corporation. As of March 31 this year, Yeah1 had a 100% voting right at TNT Advertising Communication Corporation.

As for the Group’s business performance, YEG’s revenue in the first quarter of this year reached VND67.5 billion, down nearly 77% year-on-year. Its after-tax profit in the first quarter was VND0.84 billion while the same period last year saw a loss of VND52.52 billion.

Some 30 tons of fresh lychee sold at Vietnamese Goods Week in Japan

The Japanese retailer sells Vietnamese agricultural products in some 350 of the group's stores and supermarkets across Japan and on its websites from July 1 to 3.

AEON Group, the Japanese retailer, expected to sell about 30 tons of fresh lychee and 2.5 tons of fresh bananas from Vietnam during the three-day Vietnamese Goods Week in Japan.

The Japanese retailer sells Vietnamese agricultural products in some 350 of the group's stores and supermarkets across Japan and on its websites from July 1 to 3.  

The highlight of this year's program was the "Souvenir Fair" organized for the first time by AEON to present typical Vietnamese knitted and embroidered souvenirs and other items.

A number of new products with the brand Topvalu from Vietnam such as deep-fried breaded shrimp, frozen Cat Chu mango, cashews and mixed nuts were also introduced to Japanese consumers at the Week.

Vietnamese Goods Week at AEON supermarket system is an annual event organized by AEON Co., Ltd., the Ministry of Industry and Trade, the Hanoi People's Committee and the Embassy of Vietnam in Japan since 2015. 

It is one of the effective programs to boost the implementation of the project "Selling Vietnamese goods in foreign distribution systems" with the goal of increasing export revenue from selling Vietnamese products in the AEON system to US$1 billion by 2025.

Source: VNA/SGT/VNS/VOV/Dtinews/SGGP/VGP/Hanoitimes


Pharmaceutical firms show mixed performance

Six-month revenues of pharmaceutical firms paint a mixed picture of the industry in the first half.

Ship damages bridge over Saigon River

Binh Phuoc 1 Bridge connecting Thu Duc City and District 12 over the Saigon River was damaged after being hit by a ship traveling under the bridge.

Vietnam sees rise in Covid-19 infections and deaths

Vietnam has seen a recent rise in the number of Covid-19 infections and deaths due to the appearance of new Omicron sub-variants.

Phu Quoc halts scuba diving tours for coral protection

Underwater tourism activities that threaten coral reefs at Phu Quoc marine sanctuary have been suspended.

Vietnam, Poland capitalize on EVFTA preferences

The implementation of the Vietnam - EU Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) has greatly contributed to raising two-way trade turnover between Vietnam and Poland to over US$1 billion since the beginning of the year.

Foreign trade hits more than US$30 bln in first half of August

The General Department of Vietnam Customs reported the total import-export value of Vietnam in the first half of August 2022 has hit more than US$30 billion.

Vietnam improves forecasting in face of natural disasters

Natural disasters are becoming more unpredictable and extreme due to climate change, causing more extensive damage to people and property.

Expert backs proposal to invest in refinery complex in Ba Ria-Vung Tau

A proposal by the Vietnam Oil and Gas Group (Petrovietnam) to invest in a petrochemical and refinery complex and national oil storage facility with total investment of nearly 19 billion USD in the southern province of Ba Ria-Vung Tau is a good idea.

Vietnam’s public debt decreases significantly

Vietnam’s public debt in the 2017-2021 period decreased dramatically from 61.4% of its GDP to 43.1%, according to the latest information released by the Ministry of Finance.

Get a taste of nature in northern national parks

National parks with abundant greenery and diverse flora and fauna act as lungs for many regions and provide a paradise for nature lovers.

Over US$34 billion set to pour into Vietnam’s real estate market this year

During the first seven months of 2022, over VND420 trillion (US$18 billion) was pumped into the real estate market. The figure could be raised to VND800 trillion ($34 billion) by the end of the year in case of favorable conditions.


Government offers support to additional 243,000 pandemic-hit labourers

Tourism businesses struggle to get cut-rate loans

Struggling tourism businesses in HCM City are in dire need of credit to recover but are finding it very difficult to access the subsidised loans under the Government’s Decree 31 that took effect in May, according to the city's Department of Tourism.


Ministry of Finance seeks to drop fuel price stabilization fund

Vietnam to tighten management, increase supervision to prevent tax loss

Nowadays online shopping becomes more popular than in-store shopping and more people have taken take full advantage of social networking platforms to put an ad on social network platforms about their products.