Cell phone buying energy not as strong as expected


VietNamNet Bridge - Although the Lunar New Year 2013 is drawing near, the cell phone buying energy remains mild, contrary to expectation of retailers. Dinh Anh Huan, sales director of the retail chain Thegioididong.com, said mobile phone sales had picked up slightly, estimated at 20%, versus a growth of 40% last year. At this time in previous years, the buying energy was very strong, but it seems to cool down this year. This suggests consumers are tightening their purse strings under the impact of economic downturn, said Huan. The latest statistics of Thegioididong.com show that its cell phone sales fell slightly in December last year and the sales volumes and revenues of the other months were almost the same, without any sudden growth. On average, the retail chain sold around 300,000 cell phones per month. Other mobile phone retailers like Mai Nguyen, FPT Shop, Vien Thong A and Viettel Smart also record modest growth in purchasing power. Smartphones with reasonable … [Read more...]


Thua Thien-Hue plans to attract VND2.9 tril. investment into IPs The central province of Thua Thien-Hue has planned to lure VND2.9 trillion worth of investment in its industrial parks (IPs) this year. This year, enterprises in IPs are expected to disburse nearly VND 2,890 billion and employ some new 3,000 people (up 21.9% against last year). In 2012, they made industrial production value of VND3,247, accounting for 39.2% of the province's total, and export turnovers of US$294.6 million, representing 64% of the total. IPs have lured 78 investment projects, including 42 operational ones. They enticed VND7,200 billion worth of investment in 2012, trebling the figure in 2011. Phu Quy wind farm opens The 6-megawatt Phu Quy wind farm in Phu Quy island district , Binh Thuan province began full operation on January 24, after a successful testing period in August, 2012. The wind farm, funded by the PetroVietnam Power Corporation, is the first one in Vietnam that uses both … [Read more...]


Asiana Airlines to own 50% of Kumho Asiana Plaza A 50% stake in the commercial center and hotel complex Kumho Asiana Plaza Saigon in HCMC will be acquired by Asiana Airlines, said Won Il Woo, president and CEO of Kumho Engineering & Construction. "This is an internal deal within Kumho as it is being made between its two subsidiaries, Asiana Airlines and Kumho Engineering & Construction," he said at a meeting with HCMC vice chairman Le Manh Ha on Thursday. He asked about the necessary procedures under Vietnamese law for this deal. "We don't know if we have to report to the central agencies in Hanoi, or if reporting to HCMC is enough," he wondered. In response, Vice Chairman Ha said the municipal government would review the project document next week and then give appropriate guidelines. "Normally, the authorities that license a project will handle changes in that project. However, when it comes to real estate, there are complicated regulations, so a careful review … [Read more...]

Software developer expects high profits

FPT's shareholders at the annual general meeting held on March 29 in Ha Noi. (Photo: Vietnamplus)

The software developer FPT Corp. hopes to make pre-tax profits of VND1.45 trillion ($83 million) this year, up 17 percent on the previous year, it announced at its annual general meeting of shareholders March 29 in Ha Noi. The meeting decided that dividends will be paid at 26 percent of last year's profits. The company will reinvest the rest to ensure operations in the following years. The company's revenues last year hit a record VND16.8 trillion ($1 billion). This year the company aims to make VND17 trillion despite the difficult economic situation. Its two subsidiary companies, FPT Information System and FPT Trading Company, will go public this year. … [Read more...]

Vietnam’s smarthome superior but China product is cheaper


VietNamNet Bridge - Vietnamese smarthome manufacturers believe that their products are the best in the world, but they are still afraid of low-cost Chinese products. Unlike the smartphone market which is controlled by foreign brands, the smarthome market is a playing field for Vietnamese manufacturers. However, they have been warned that low-cost, low-quality Chinese products may damage the market. Analysts began talking about the strong development of the Vietnamese smarthome market some years ago, believing that the increasingly high number of smart devices would prompt people to use smarthomes. However, their prediction has not come true yet because of three reasons. First, Vietnamese don’t think they need to change their habit of using on/off contact, though they know with the controller, accidents sometimes happen while power is wasted. Many Vietnamese think it is not necessary to use smarthome though they are quite capable of paying pay for it. Second, smarthome is … [Read more...]

New policies take effect in Vietnam in December

New regulations on special financial supervision over State-owned enterprises, the establishment of social enterprises, the competence of environmental police, and the implementation of the revised Law on Investment are among new policies taking effect in December. Under Decree No. 87/2015/ND-CP dated October 6, 2015, the Ministry of Finance (MOF) will be responsible for coordinating with other related ministries and sectors in performing the supervision of state capital investment in enterprises. The new regulation also lays out five criteria for assessing efficiency of enterprises' operation, including turnover; after-tax profits and return-on-equity ratio; overdue debts and capacity to pay due debts; observance of the law on investment, management and use of state capital, laws on taxes and other budget remittances, and regulations on financial statements and reports for financial supervision; and provision of public-utility products and services. The Decree also requires … [Read more...]

Scientists warn about toxic Chinese herbicide in Vietnam


VietNamNet Bridge - An extremely toxic herbicide made in China may penetrate the Vietnamese market through smuggling in 2016, which is a major threat to food safety and environment. Dr Nguyen Kim Van from the Vietnam Plant Protection Association (VNPPA) said at a food safety conference held recently that China is likely to change liquid paraquat, a kind of herbicide, into powder. If so, a large volume of liquid paraquat China made before would be carried to neighboring countries, including Vietnam. Paraquat is quick acting, killing all green plants on contact just within 24 hours. It is also toxic to human beings, animals and the environment, As paraquat has a high toxicity level, it is listed among the chemicals for restricted use. Any living being contaminated with paraquat cannot be detoxified. The Lao Cai provincial Department of Agriculture and Rural Development reported that there were 26 paraquat poisoning cases in the period from March 2013 to June 2014, and 80 percent … [Read more...]

Photos: Hanoi’s lakes are severely polluted

Linh Quang Lake

VietNamNet Bridge – At least six major lakes in Hanoi have become severely polluted due to the dumping of thousands of cubic meters of sewage water from households and factories each day, according to a newlyreleased report from the Centre for Environment and Community Research. They are Linh Quang, Van Chuong, Kim Lien, Thien Quang , Ba Mau, and Ao Phu. According to research by the centre at 120 lakes and ponds in Hanoi in 2010, 71% of the lakes in the city were seriously polluted. As rubbish is dumped into the lakes and people continue to build onto their surface area, many lakes in Hanoi may disappear. The authorities have tried to dredge mud and grow rafts of pollutant-resistant plants on affected lakes but the situation has not improved, due to a large amount of daily sewage. About 650,000 cubic meters of wastewater is discharged into the river system each day. However, the capital only has three waste treatment plants with total capacity of 206,000 cubic meters a … [Read more...]

Vocational schools in Vietnam scale down despite huge investments


VietNamNet Bridge - Multibillions of dong have been pumped into vocational schools, but this has not helped prevent schools from sinking. Nguyen Van Phuc, a National Assembly’s deputy from Ha Tinh province, questioned the Minister of Labor, War Invalids and Social Affairs Pham Thi Hai Chuyen why a lot of vocational schools built at the costs of billions of dong still have been idle, while Vietnam still lacks skilled and trained workers. Chuyen admitted that this is a big waste of the society’s resources as a lot of schools have been built but cannot operate at full capacity. This is because the schools cannot enroll enough students. Many vocational school graduates cannot find jobs. The key problem lies in the unreasonable training method followed by schools which produce substandard workers. A report of the Ministry of Labor, Ward Invalids and Social Affairs (MOLISA) showed that 14 vocational schools were established in 2011-2015 alone which provided 3-year … [Read more...]

As Vietnam integrates more with the world, its weaknesses revealed


VietNamNet Bridge - Vietnam has joined 15 free trade areas (FTAs) at the same time, which has worried businesses of overlapping regulations. In its cooperation relationship with Japan, for example, Vietnam has participated in three different FTAs. Of the 15 FTAs, eight FTAs have taken effect, and seven FTAs are under negotiation. Ms. Phung Thi Lan Phuong, Head of the FTA Division of the WTO and Integration Center of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), said that in the process of integration, enterprises can apply any FTA because the signed FTAs and those which are under negotiation exist in parallel, and the latter would not eliminate the former. Companies need to research agreements to apply the more beneficial one. Later FTAs usually have a higher level of liberalization. At this moment, particularly in cooperation relations with Japan, Vietnam is engaged in three different FTAs, including the Agreement on ASEAN - Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership … [Read more...]

How much are ACV shares worth?


VietNamNet Bridge - Though having set a starting price at VND11,800 per share for the IPO (initial public offering), slated for December 10, the Airports Corporation, and its consultancy firm, believe the real value of the shares is higher. At the roadshow ACV organized on November 19 to offer ACV shares to investors, BIDV Securities Company (BSC), the consultant, emphasized that ACV is a business with sustainable financial structure and strong cash flow. Its turnover growth rate in 2012-2014 was very high at 14 percent per annum. In 2014, ACV reported total revenue of VND7.9 trillion and the pretax profit of VND1.69 trillion, which did not count profits from the exchange rate fluctuations. The turnover of VND10.13 trillion and post-tax VND1.719 trillion have been predicted for 2015, respectively, while the figures would be VND13.99 trillion and VND3.4 trillion, respectively for 2020. BSC said it tried three calculation methods to valuate ACV’s shares and found that every … [Read more...]

HCM City ranks 32nd in Top 65 main streets


Vietnam has surpassed Thailand to rank 32nd on a list of the 65 best main streets in the world, in Cushman & Wakefield’s 27th "Main Streets Across The World" report. Cushman & Wakefield report on best retail streets in the world sees Vietnam overtake Thailand. The report tracks over 500 of the top retail streets around the globe, ranking the most expensive in each country by their prime rental value and thus enabling analysis of the headline trends in retail real estate performance. Ho Chi Minh City of Vietnam was ranked number 32 on the list of 65 main streets in the world, with rental costs of $1,447 per square foot per year in what is described as "Prime High Street", which includes Dong Khoi, Le Loi, Nguyen Hue, and Le Thanh Ton in District 1. Hong Kong leads in Asia, with $23,178, while Thailand’s best street has a rental cost of $1,212 per square foot per year. The report showed that in Vietnam and Malaysia the growth of the retail market and the … [Read more...]

MOF slashes auto part import tariffs to protect local production


VietNamNet Bridge - Citing local production protection, the Ministry of Finance (MOF) wants to ease the import tariffs on automobile parts. However, the move could 'fatten’ foreign invested enterprises (FIEs) only, while local manufacturers will not see benefits. Dr. Nguyen Van Nam, a renowned economist, who believes that Vietnam’s tax policies give big preferences to FIEs, has warned that the tax cuts may bring undesired effects. "With the plan, MOF will identify FIEs and Vietnamese owned enterprises," Nam said. "FIEs, which mostly invests in assembling factories in Vietnam, will get big benefits when the car part tariff is cut. Meanwhile, Vietnamese enterprises, which meet a lot of difficulties, including the lack of capital, land, technology and distribution network, cannot get any support," Nam commented. Commenting that slashing import tariffs is the only tool state management agencies have to regulate the automobile industry, Nam said that the preferences … [Read more...]

Vietnam’s Le Quyen enters Miss Supranational top 10 evening gowns

T. Van

VietNamNet Bridge – The Jury of Miss Supranational 2015 has announced the 10 most beautiful evening gowns, including the dress of Vietnamese representative – Le Quyen. The other best evening gowns include those performed by the candidates from the Philippines, Myanmar, Chile, Iceland, America, Canada, Trinidad & Tobago, and Japan. The jury also announced the 10 Top Models, comprising representatives of Colombia, the Dominican Republic, India, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, the Philippines, Poland, Rwanda, and Slovakia. The top 10 candidates for the Best Body category consist of representatives of Australia, Colombia, the Czech Republic, Guadeloupe, Jamaica, Kenya, Malaysia, Panama, Paraguay, and Slovak Republic. The winners of these competitions will be announced on December 1. Hoa Thi Oanh Yen selected Ms Pancontinental Miss Vietnam Hoa Thi Oanh Yen and Mister Philippines Ben David Hitchcock were chosen on November 30 to be the world’s best goodwill ambassadors … [Read more...]

VN Coast Guard Force gets multi-purpose vessel


The defence ministry and the Song Thu Shipyard Corporation launched a multi-purpose vessel, CBS 8005, for the Viet Nam Coast Guard Force at a ceremony yesterday. Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, the Netherlands Ambassador in Viet Nam, and officials from the defence ministry, the Viet Nam Coast Guard Force and the Song Thu Shipyard Corporation attend a ceremony organised to launch a multi-purpose vessel, CBS 8005, for the Viet Nam Coast Guard Force, in Da Nang yesterday. It's the second ship that the Da Nang-based corporation has built for the Coast Guard Force to improve law enforcement on the sea. The building of the vessel took 12 months. Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc highly appreciated the efforts taken by workers and staff of Song Thu Corporation, and the support and co-operation extended by the Netherlands government and Dutch shipyard firm Damen Group. "The launch of the ship today marks the growth and development of the military industry, the local ship … [Read more...]

Vietnam to lack 1 million IT workers in 5 years


VietNamNet Bridge - In the past three years, the number of jobs in the information technology - software sector increased by an average 47% per year, while the number of employees increased only 8%, according to the report on the information technology (IT) industry in Vietnam released recently by online recruitment company VietnamWorks. Web and Java are two leading expertises being sought. Source: TechLooper - VietnamWorks. "If the gap in growth rates between supply and demand continues in the coming years, Vietnam will increasingly lack human resources for the sector that takes the lead in the employment market," said Paul Espinas, Marketing Director of VietnamWorks. According to the report, if supply growth remains low, Vietnam will face a shortage of 78,000 IT workers each year. And by 2020 there will be in a shortage of over 500,000 people, accounting for over 78% of total IT manpower that the market needs. To achieve the figure of 17 candidates for each job (the rate in … [Read more...]

Hanoi to elect new chair on Dec. 4

Major General Nguyen Duc Chung.

VietNamNet Bridge – The Politburo has agreed with the Hanoi City Party Committee’s recommendation of Major General Nguyen Duc Chung, Director of the Hanoi Public Security Agency, as the only candidate for the election of the new chair of Hanoi. The election of the Hanoi’s new chair is scheduled on December 4, as part of the 14th session of the Hanoi People's Council from December 1-5, announced Hanoi’s deputy chairman Le Van Hoat at a press conference last week. Nguyen Hoai Nam, head of the legislation division of the Hanoi People’s Council, the Council will elect only one position – the chairmanship of the Hanoi People's Committee – at the upcoming session. Nam said the current Chair - Mr. Nguyen The Thao – had submitted his resignation and his petition was approved. The Politburo has also agreed with the Hanoi Party Committee’s recommendation of Nguyen Duc Chung as the candidate for the Hanoi’s chairmanship. General … [Read more...]

To export 400kg of gold, gold firms must pay tax debts

Bong Mieu gold plant.

VietNamNet Bridge – The two gold mining plants of Bong Mieu and Phuoc Son have to pay nearly VND400 billion (nearly $20 million) of tax debts before being licensed to export gold, said a Government official at a government press conference last week. Earlier, the State Bank of Vietnam had asked the Prime Minister to licence Bong Mieu and Phuoc Son, two gold mining firms of the Besra Group (Canada) based in the central province of Quang Nam, to export nearly 375 kg of gold (175kg of Bong Mieu and 200kg of Phuoc Son), but they still owe nearly $20 million in taxes. The central bank argued that although two companies have not fully implemented their tax obligations they were allowed them to export gold to help them overcome difficulties, have money to pay wages for its workers and to pay tax debts. Regarding the doubt that these gold miners have assets but did not want to pay taxes, a Besra Group representative said that the 375kg of gold are not in stock. "We want to have a … [Read more...]

Falling behind, Vietnam still spends money on luxury goods


VietNamNet Bridge - Though Vietnam is among the countries with lower average income, many Vietnamese are still willing to spend big money on luxury goods. Asia Briefing recently reported that of the 50 Mercedes-Maybach S600s priced at VND9.6 billion, which will be launched into the global market, Vietnamese super-rich had ordered 10. Nguoi Lao Dong reported that the lot of luxurious Hermes handbags imported to Vietnam recently sold out just within a short time, though they sold for VND1.6 billion. Foreign newspapers reported with surprise that Bugatti, Rolls Royce, Bentley and Maybach cars all are available in Vietnam, while many luxurious automobile manufacturers have set up sales agents here, commenting that Vietnam is a paradise of luxury goods. The CEO of a luxury phone brand from the UK said he was surprised when seeing that many Vietnamese use smartphones valued at tens of thousands of dollars. A report of Knight Frank showed that the demand for luxury goods in Vietnam … [Read more...]