Remittances to HCM City merely impacted by COVID-19
Despite negative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, remittances Ho Chi Minh City received through commercial banks and economic organisations are forecast to reach 5.5 billion USD this year, a slight increase from 2019.
In the first ten months, the figure was 4.7 billion USD. Some local commercial banks even posted an annual surge in their remittances.
Deputy General Director of Sacombank Nguyen Minh Tam said the remittances sent home via his bank in 2020 are likely to triple the figure for 2019.
He attributed the soaring number to Sacombank’s application of its API online payment method, which has facilitated its Vietnamese expatriate and guest worker customers amid the pandemic.
Their incomes have been affected by COVID-19, but the amount of their foreign currencies channeled into Vietnam has gone up significantly thank to online transactions, Tam said.
However, in a broader scale, negative impact of the pandemic on the flow of remittances to Vietnam this year are unavoidable.
The World Bank has projected that remittances to the country might drop by over 7 percent to 15.7 billion USD this year, the first reduction since 2010. In spite of that, in a report by the bank, Vietnam still ranked third in East Asia and Pacific regions in terms of remittance volume, only after China and the Philippines.
Can Van Luc, a banking and finance expert, said Vietnam has carried out good COVID-19 prevention and control work, adding that the over-7-percent decrease can be considered a success given the complicated COVID-19 developments worldwide. Remittances to the Asia-Pacific region, which has a large number of people working overseas, are forecast to go down by more than 10 percent this year, according to Luc.
Over 6,400 firms resume operations in HCM City
Over 6,400 firms in Ho Chi Minh City resumed their operations in 11 months of this year despite the COVID-19 pandemic, up more than 21 percent year-on-year.
Over 37,500 new enterprises were licensed with a total registered capital of more than 947 trillion VND (41.1 billion USD), down 7.3 percent in volume and up over 58 percent in registered capital annually.
Meanwhile, more than 126,000 firms changed business registration contents, with additional capital up over 41 percent year-on-year.
According to the municipal Department of Planning and Investment, over 5,100 firms completed dissolution procedures during the period, a rise of 15.6 percent compared to the same period last year.
As many as 13,000 companies suspended operations, up 41 percent annually.
The city is now home to over 443,600 firms with a registered capital of more than 7 quadrillion VND./.
Ensuring standards, quality in exports of Luc Ngan “thieu” litchi to Japan
Bac Giang province has worked with the Plant Protection Department at the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and exporting enterprises to prepare documents, conduct surveys, and issue codes for a planting area of 50 hectares of “thieu” litchi, for export to Japan.
Like Thanh’s household, Luong Van Canh’s family has grown 2 hectares of litchi and he has applied GlobalGAP standards so they can be exported to Japan. He has also installed a surveillance camera system to monitor the entire process. His orchard will provide about 10 tonnes of the fruit at a price of some 30,000 VND per kg.
Luc Ngan district has pushed forward with the application of technology in cultivation and production, and coordinated with specialised agencies to build production models under VietGAP standards. Its litchi growing area increased to 15 hectares this year, with the participation of 12 households. Output is expected to hit 30 tonnes. The households have been taught techniques on taking care of the trees and using pest control, as well as other techniques that follow VietGAP standards. This is a modern farming method that ensures the safety of growers and limits the level of preservatives, pesticides, and fertilisers, making the crop more environmentally friendly. In the year to come, the province plans to expand the model and create an economic pillar.
Bac Giang is now cultivating 15,000 hectares of litchi under VietGAP standards, or 53 percent of the province’s total, with output estimated at 110,000 tonnes, or nearly 69 percent of the total. The litchi area that meets GlobalGap standards is 80 hectares, and yields 500 tonnes. The process of selecting the right exporters is also important. Two – the Chanh Thu Fruit Import and Export Company and the AMEII Vietnam Joint Stock Company – have signed contracts and purchased litchi from Luc Ngan for export to Japan. Both are impressed by the quality of the local fruit.
Bac Giang’s lychee crop in 2020 is expected to be successful, totalling an estimated 160,000 tons, or about 10,000 tons higher than in 2019. Bac Giang lychee used to be mostly exported to China, but in recent years has been sent to choosy markets with high prices, such as the US and Australia. Japan approved the importation of litchi grown under VietGAP and GlobalGAP standards this year, presenting a major opportunity for Vietnamese lychee exports in general and Bac Giang province in particular.
In order to ensure the market and maintain the value of the litchi, Bac Giang will continue to promote and encourage local people to grow more agriculture products that meet VietGAP standards. At the same time, it will develop markets via fairs, marketing, advertising, and trade promotions. The province is also implementing policies to encourage State-owned and private enterprises to sign purchase contracts with local farmers./.
VNG Corporation eyes new fintech solution partners
Top Vietnamese internet company, VNG Corporation, is eyeing new fintech solution partners at Enterprise Singapore (ESG)’s inaugural Southeast Asian Open Innovation Challenge at the Singapore Week of Innovation and Technology 2020 (SWITCH 2020) from December 7 to 11.
Accordingly, VNG Corporation will be sourcing for innovation partners to co-innovate complementary technologies to support its eKnow Your Customer (eKYC) solution which enables digital banking for banks and financial institutions.
Vu Minh Tri, CEO of VNG Cloud and Vice President of VNG Corporation, said: “Like Singapore, Vietnam is committed to support innovation and has made it easy for local businesses to access technology from overseas, and startup funding, and invest in human capital development. The relevance of technology has been made clear to business after COVID-19, and there’s a growing interest among corporates and SMEs in Vietnam to co-innovate new solutions for the growing fintech, retail and manufacturing industries.
Singapore’s market-led approach and its role as the technology hub for ASEAN is a potential source for technology and solutions to better service our business partners and consumers. We will continue to seek collaborations with promising technology companies to strengthen our offerings and support our government in growing the fintech industry.”
VNG Corporation’s participation at SWITCH 2020 caps a series of initiatives to deepen innovation partnerships in a two-year Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that was signed in 2018 between the National Agency for Technology Entrepreneurship and Commercialisation Development (NATEC) under the Vietnam’s Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) and ESG. The MOU aimed to facilitate collaborations for startups, ecosystem builders and tertiary institutions between both countries.
NATEC and ESG will renew the MOU for another two years at SWITCH 2020 on December 7, 2020.
The renewal will build on existing collaborations between Vietnam and Singapore, with an additional focus on leveraging existing open innovation initiatives such as the Singapore Open Innovation Network to crowd source solutions for corporates in Vietnam.
Over the past two years, the MOU has strengthened the global innovation communities’ access to Vietnam’sstartup landscape. It has also connected startups from Vietnam to major technology hubs.
Venture Capital activities have also been strengthened./.
Economic development key to job creation: Official
Economic development and business expansion are crucial to job creation, which in itself is significant for sustainable poverty reduction, according to Minister of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs Dao Ngoc Dung.
At a recent Q&A session in the 10th plenary session of the 14th National Assembly, Dung underscored the need for businesses to focus on enhancing the quality of human resources management and technological renovation.
He noted that leading businesses in applying technology and business management have reported stable operations and created a large number of jobs. Training, however, is yet match needs.
Dung underlined that it is necessary to pay greater attention to workforce training before, during, and after people are employed. The ministry has built a project in this regard, for submission to the Government early in the new year.
The minister also stressed the need for the training sector to offer training sought by businesses.
Despite the impact of COVID-19, he said, the country has generated 7.8 million new jobs this year, with the ratio of trained workers reaching 64 percent. Unemployment in the third quarter was 2.48 percent overall and 3.63 percent in urban areas.
Figures from the General Statistics Office reveal that as of September, Vietnam had seen 31.8 million people aged 15 and above negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The service sector was hardest hit, with 68.9 percent of workers affected, followed by industry and construction with 66.4 percent and agro-forestry-fisheries, 27 percent.
In the first nine months of this year, Vietnam had 54.4 million workers aged 15 and above, a decline of 1.2 million compared to the same period last year, primarily in rural areas. The workforce in the first nine months of each year rose 1 percent annually in the 2016-2019 period./.
Malaysia’s economy to recover next year: MIDF Research
Malaysia’s economy is set to recover in 2021, driven by domestic support, although headwinds in 2020 will continue to persist next year and weigh on growth expectation.
In its 2021 market outlook presentation on December 3, MIDF Research said that the COVID-19 pandemic will remain as the biggest threat to economic recovery, followed by other issues such as rising protectionism, geopolitical tension, political instability and volatility in commodity prices.
The financial services provider, nevertheless, forecast that Malaysia’s economy will be able to grow by 7 percent year-on-year in 2021, which falls in between Bank Negara Malaysia and Ministry of Finance’s growth targets of 6.5 percent to 7.5 percent.
It added that domestic demand is expected to drive economic recovery as economic activities resume and sentiments improve, while private consumption and private investments are expected to rebound next year, expanding by 7 percent and 8.3 percent, respectively.
Based on September 2020’s data, retail sales, which is a proxy to consumption, has managed to record a marginal year-on-year growth of 1.1 percent after six consecutive months of contraction.
The research house also said that growth is to be observed in all economic sectors, while expansion is likely to take place starting from the services sector, which is the largest contributor to Malaysia’s economy, right to the construction sector, which has the lowest share of the nation’s total gross domestic product./.
New programme to support enterprises’ digital transformation over next 5 years
The Ministry of Planning and Investment and the US Agency for International Development (USAID) co-organised a launch ceremony for the “Supporting Enterprises’ Digital Transformation from 2021 to 2025” programme on December 3 in Hanoi.
The programme will support enterprises’ digital transformation by raising awareness, digitalising their business and management models, and promoting comprehensive digitalisation to develop new products, services, and business models.
In his remarks, Minister of Planning and Investment Nguyen Chi Dung said revolutionary technological development is changing people’s lives, and the competitive advantage of enterprises is shifting based on new technologies and innovation.
Therefore, digital transformation is a means for companies to rebound quickly from COVID-19, improve their competitiveness, and break through during the fourth Industrial Revolution, he noted.
Over the next few years, the ministry will cooperate with USAID to implement the programme. Its goals are that by 2025, 100 percent of enterprises are aware of digital transformation, at least 100,000 enterprises are supported to use a digital transformation readiness evaluation tool and other digital solutions, and at least 100 manufacturing and processing enterprises successfully adopt digital transformation. Examples of the successful application of digital transformation will be replicated on a larger scale. A network of at least 100 digital transformation experts and agencies will also be established to assist in providing digital consultancy and services to enterprises.
USAID Vietnam Mission Director Ann Marie Yastishock said that with digitalisation and automation, enterprises will be able to achieve robust and sustainable growth despite the challenging times posed by COVID-19.
Successful digital transformation will provide them with encouragement and power to increase productivity, product quality and overall competitiveness, she continued, and thereby they can optimise production and management to climb up the global supply chain./.
Indonesia intensifies monitoring of fish exports to China
The Indonesian Government plans to monitor its fish exports to China more strictly after the latter imposed a series of import suspensions over concerns about coronavirus contamination.
According to the Indonesian Ministry of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, as of November, three Indonesian fish exporters from North Sumatra, East Java and Banten had faced import suspensions from the Chinese customs authority after it allegedly discovered the novel coronavirus in samples of their products.
The Ministry of Trade’s spokesperson Fithra Faisal said that the government will step up its efforts to detect the coronavirus in fish exports bound for China and will possibly expand such measures to exports to other countries.
China began testing imported chilled and frozen meat and seafood for the coronavirus in June. The effort was intensified in November after port workers in Chinese cities tested positive for the virus.
In November, China said it had found the virus on the packaging of products from 20 countries, including German pork and Indian fish.
On November 10, China had suspended imports from Indonesian fish exporter PT Anugrah Laut Indonesia for one week after COVID-19 was allegedly detected in a sample of frozen fish products supplied by the firm./.
2020 aquatic product exports predicted to hit 8.6 bln USD
Vietnam may earn 8.6 billion USD from exporting aquatic products this year, the same as the figure in 2019, the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) has forecast, adding that it would be a result beyond the expectations of most given the COVID-19 pandemic.
Export turnover stood at 7.8 billion VND in the first 11 months of the year; also the same year-on-year.
After significant declines at the beginning of the year due to the pandemic, aquatic product exports began recovering in July, with November posting impressive year-on-year growth of 13 percent.
Shrimp remains the main export item, with double-digit month-on-month growth seen since June, including a notable 25 percent in September and October and 28 percent in November. Exports totalled 3.5 billion USD in the first 11 months, up 14 percent year-on-year.
Meanwhile, overall seafood shipments have recovered since August and reached 2.9 billion USD in the first 11 months, down 1.2 percent year-on-year.
The US, the EU, and China continued to be the main importers of Vietnam’s aquatic products, with growth of 25 percent, 30 percent, and 15 percent, respectively.
Vietnam is estimated to earn 1.65 billion USD from aquaculture exports to the US, 992 million USD to the EU (excluding the UK), and 1.48 billion USD to China./.
Int’l cooperation essential to support agricultural development
The International Support Group’s Plenary Meeting for 2020 will be held on December 11 to promote global cooperation to support agricultural and rural development in Vietnam during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The meeting is an opportunity for the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) to share their priorities for the development of the sector in the future, calling upon the international community to implement solutions to cope with the challenging times caused by the pandemic.
Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyen Xuan Cuong together with the World Bank Country Director in Vietnam Carolyn Turk and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Resident Representative in Vietnam Caitlin Wiesen will co-chair the meeting.
The main objectives are to discuss the impacts of COVID-19 on the global and the Vietnamese economies and agriculture and rural development. It will set policy recommendations and solutions to cope with the impacts of the pandemic.
Developing international cooperation programmes and projects focusing on the restoration of agricultural production and businesses, connecting global supply chains in the context of COVID-19 will also be on the agenda.
At the meeting, international organisations including the International Agricultural Development Fund (IFAD), World Bank (WB), Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and the UNDP will share research results on assessing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the economy and the production of farm households; agricultural enterprises; the disruption in the agro-commodity supply chain; environmental hazards and national as well as global food security issues. They will set recommendations and solutions for agricultural development.
The meeting is likely to adopt a joint statement which demonstrates a high commitment to continue cooperation between the MARD and development partners to promote sustainable agricultural and rural development in Vietnam, contributing to the implementation of Government “dual” goals.
The ISG plenary meeting is a high-level policy dialogue forum held annually between the MARD and the community of international sponsors, business groups and partners to exchange and share policy directions and priorities of both sides to promote international cooperation, strengthen coordination of resources to promote Vietnam’s agricultural development towards a sustainable and inclusive direction.
This year’s meeting entitled “Vietnam’s agriculture and rural development in the context of COVID-19 impacts: Opportunities and challenges” is expected to draw 200 participants from international organisations, enterprises and units under the MARD./.
Vietnam expected to mount strong recovery next year: UK’s Proactive
Vietnam is expected to mount a “strong recovery in 2021”, with growth projected to strengthen to 6.5 percent as domestic and foreign economic activity stablished, the UK-based news outlet proactiveinvestors.co.uk (Proactive) has cited a report from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
In a story published recently, the newswire highlighted Vietnam as one of the most successful countries in minimising the impact of the coronavirus on its economy, with the IMF saying the Southeast Asian nation’s containment of the virus should allow its economy to stage a fast rebound in the post-pandemic world.
The IMF said Vietnam’s growth this year is expected to be 2.4 percent, among the highest in the world, thanks to the country’s “decisive steps to contain the health and economic fallout from COVID-19”, Proactive reported.
The IMF’s view has been echoed by investment firm Vietnam Holding Limited which has said Vietnam’s resiliency during the pandemic had “helped raise its profile as a major trade partner” and expected trade relations with the country and other nations to “gain further momentum”.
The group also anticipated that the country’s economy will return to an expansion rate above 6 percent next year given its “multiple engines of growth”, Proactive said.
Vietnam’s status as a trading partner is also likely to be bolstered by the recently announced creation of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), a free trade agreement between 15 countries in the Asia Pacific region that will form the world’s largest trading bloc.
It quoted Craig Martin, chair of Vietnam Holding’s investment manager Dynam Capital, as saying that the RCEP could add 1 percent to the Vietnamese economy over a few years.
Trade deals like this further accelerates Vietnam’s growth story, Matin said./.
Indonesia eyes 9 percent in loan growth in 2021
Bank Indonesia (BI) sees bank lending to expand by 7 – 9 percent next year on the back of low-interest rates and recovery in the economy, according to its Governor Perry Warjiyo.
According to reports of the central bank, lending shrunk by 0.5 percent in the first 10 months this year from the same period last year, in line with the slowdown in business activities and weak consumer demand amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Consumers and companies alike clang to their cash, as evident in the 12 percent growth of the third-party funds in local banks in the Jan-October period, the bank said
Perry said the national economy has increased as the government is easing the restriction to curb the health crisis.
Other indicators also show improvement. Inflation rose slightly to 1.59 percent in November from 1.44 percent a month earlier, reflecting an increase in consumer demand. Foreign exchange reserves continued to increase, while the current account deficit declined, and foreign capital flowed into Indonesia.
Those indicators encouraged BI to cut its benchmark rate by 25 basis points last month to only 3.75 percent – the lowest in history./.
Asian media seek answer for how Vietnam maintains economic growth amid pandemic
Vietnam seems to be an only bright spot in Asia, which ably balanced public health and economics right from the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Manila Times of the Philippines.
In an article published on December 3, Manila Times praised Vietnam’s efforts in the fight against the health crisis.
The article cited the World Bank’s forecast that Vietnam’s economy would grow by 2.8 percent in 2020, even as its Asian neighbours struggle to recover from the ongoing crisis.
Meanwhile, the Nikkei Asia of Japan stressed that Vietnam has succeeded in keeping the pandemic under control.
The country’s achievement in fighting COVID-19 has helped the country reduce the pandemic’s impact on its economy as manufacturing has resumed faster than it did elsewhere in the region, job losses were limited, and consumer spending, which accounts for 70 percent of GDP, has remained solid.
Vietnam’s exports grew 9.9 percent on the year in October to 26.7 billion USD, it noted.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) projects that Vietnam’s per capita GDP is likely to reach 3,498 USD in 2020.
According to Sonny Africa, Executive Director of Ibon Foundation – a Philippines-based non-profit research, education and information-development institution, said the key to Vietnam’s success amid the health crisis is its ways to not only contain the spread of pandemic but also to keep its economy afloat.
Vietnam opened up its economy but ensured State ownership and control of strategic enterprises in agriculture, mining, telecommunications, railways, chemicals, water, oil, electricity, cement, steel and other heavy industries, as well as banking and finance, he said.
The scholar also took note that Vietnam considers foreign investment a driver of development, with the FDI flows into the country increasing strongly over the past three years./.
Da Nang woos hi-tech investment from RoK firms
A webinar entitled “Invest in Da Nang 2020” calling for investment from the Republic of Korea (RoK) was recently held in the central city of Da Nang.
Chaired by Vice Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Ho Ky Minh, the event was attended by the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA) and businesses operating in the city. It was also accessible to RoK firms joining via the online platform.
The RoK is among the key markets that Da Nang is seeking for investment, especially as it boasts capacity and experience in high technology and information technology (IT). They are two spearhead economic sectors that the city is striving to bolster, Minh said.
The event was to improve investment climate and opportunities in Da Nang against the backdrop that investment inflow from the RoK is shifting to Southeast Asia because of COVID-19.
It also offered chances for leaders of the city to answer investors’ queries on policies and incentives, as well as garner suggestions in an endeavour to improve the business climate and attract more RoK investors.
Most of RoK firms spoke highly of investment process and administrative procedures in investment in Da Nang, said KOTRA Director in Da Nang Lee Sung-nyung.
He said that Da Nang is currently among the smartest and most advanced cities of Vietnam, with various advantages in tourism, services, hi-tech industry and IT, among others.
KOTRA will enhance activities to connect and support RoK business delegations to explore investment chances in Da Nang in the coming time, he affirmed.
As of November, the RoK had channeled more than 376 million USD into 233 projects in Da Nang, primarily in property, industrial production and services.
The central city is home to a total of 876 foreign investment projects worth 3.52 billion USD as of mid-November.
Despite the adverse impact of COVID-19, Da Nang successfully held three online investment promotions targeting the markets of Europe, the US, Taiwan (China) and Japan./.
Webinar spotlights Vietnam-Canada trade in CPTPP in post-COVID era
The Embassy of Vietnam in Canada in coordination with the Canada-Vietnam Trade Council on December 3 held a webinar on “Vietnam – Canada Trade in CPTPP: Ways Forward and Recommendations for the Post-COVID Era”, bringing together about 70 delegates from both sides.
Speaking at the event, Vietnamese Ambassador to Canada Pham Cao Phong emphasized that Vietnam proactively joining the CPTPP demonstrates the Vietnamese government’s commitment to accelerating institutional reforms in the context of international integration. The country’s membership of free trade agreements, such as CPTPP, would enhance its manufacturing capacity as well as cross-border trade, he said.
Phong noted that Vietnamese and Canadian goods are not competitive but supplementary to each other. Vietnam mainly exports to Canada mobile phones, textile and garment, footwear, seafood and wood while its imports from Canada include wheat, soybeans, minerals, chemicals, and machinery, he added.
Speakers focused their discussions on how to effectively explore the CPTPP’s considerable potentials given that global supply chains are being restructured because of COVID-19, how enterprises from both sides can strengthen mutual understanding, and what should be done to encourage Canadian firms to invest in Vietnam.
Cindie-Ève Bourassa, Director of Diversity, FTA Promotion, Trade Missions and Outreach at the Global Affairs Canada, said the global trade system and trade deals like CPTPP have proved its importance at a time when COVID-19 has caused severe disruptions to the global supply chains.
The new-generation trade pact brings big opportunities for Vietnam to gain broader access to foreign markets as the 11-nation accord covers nearly 500 million people, about 13.3 percent of the global gross domestic product (GDP) and 15 percent of the global trade revenue. It not only boosts trade but also eliminates non-tariff barriers and facilitates foreign investment, according to Bourassa.
Canadian investors are very competitive in a number of areas of Vietnam’s interest, such as oil and gas, infrastructure development and renewable energy, she said. She added that education is also a promising area for the two nations, as Vietnamese spend around 3 billion USD annually for overseas education and more and more Vietnamese students are interested in pursuing study in Canada.
Vietnam and Canada have seen steady growth in bilateral trade over recent years, particularly after the CPTPP took effect in late 2018. Last year, the two-way trade rose by 23.4 percent to 6.1 billion USD. Vietnam is forecast to remain Canada’s largest trade partner in ASEAN with bilateral trade growing 10 percent this year./.
DATC auctions more than 4 million shares of MSB
Viet Nam’s Debt and Asset Trading Corporation (DATC) has offered to sell a complete lot of more than 4 million shares of the Vietnam Maritime Commercial Joint Stock Bank (MSB) on December 23.
The whole batch of shares or 0.34 per cent of the stake of the bank will be offered at a starting price of VND52.4 billion (US$2.27 million), according to the Ha Noi Stock Exchange (HNX).
HNX said both domestic and foreign investors were eligible to participate if they meet DATC’s requirements for current ownership ratios to comply with current bank regulations, adding purchasing time would be from December 23 to December 29.
Previously, the MSB board agreed the starting price of shares was VND46.4 billion then they increased to the value to VND52.4 billion or VND13,000 each share.
The bank has been issued a certificate of securities registration by the Vietnam Securities Depository and is completing the listing filing on the HCM City Stock Exchange (HoSE).
In the first nine months, MSB recorded net interest income of VND3.28 trillion and pre-tax profit of more than VND1.66 trillion, up 61 per cent and 56 per cent respectively from the same period last year. With this result, MSB has exceeded 15 per cent of its full-year profit target.
As of September 30, the bank’s total assets reached nearly VND166.5 trillion, up 6 per cent compared to the beginning of the year. According to the third quarter 2020 financial report, the bank has settled all issued bonds and had no bad debts at the Viet Nam Asset Management Company (VAMC).
More than 1 billion people will have access to 5G coverage by the end of 2020 globally
Ericsson projects that four out of every ten mobile subscriptions in 2026 will be 5G. This forecast is included in the latest edition of the Ericsson Mobility Report.
Current 5G uptake in subscriptions and population coverage confirms the technology as deploying the fastest of any generation of mobile connectivity. The report estimates that by the end of 2020, more than one billion people, accounting for 15 per cent of the world’s population – will live in an area that has 5G coverage rolled out. About 220 million global 5G subscriptions are also expected by the end of this year.
In 2026, 60 per cent of the world’s population will have access to 5G coverage, with 5G subscriptions forecast to reach 3.5 billion, estimated to account for more than 50 per cent of mobile data traffic at that time. In South East Asia and Oceania, 5G is predicted to be the second most popular technology in 2026, only behind LTE, surpassing 380 million subscriptions and accounting for 32 per cent of all mobile subscriptions.
In South East Asia and Oceania, total mobile data traffic continues to grow steadily with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 33 per cent for the forecast period. It is expected to reach 32EB per month in 2026, equivalent to 33GB per month per smartphone. Growth in mobile data consumption has translated into more diversified and generous data plans from mobile operators across different geographies.
The second half of this year has also seen a number of commercial 5G launches in South East Asia and Oceania with live networks now in Australia, New Zealand and Thailand. Upcoming spectrum auctions planned for 2021 in countries like Malaysia will bring additional 5G deployments next year.
Fredrik Jejdling, Executive Vice President and Head of Networks, Ericsson, says: “This year has seen society take a big leap towards digitalisation. The pandemic has highlighted the impact connectivity has on our lives and has acted as a catalyst for rapid change, which is also clearly visible in this latest edition of the Ericsson Mobility Report.
“5G is entering the next phase, when new devices and applications make the most out of the benefits it provides, while service providers continue to build out 5G. Mobile networks are a critical infrastructure for many aspects of everyday life, and 5G will be key to future economic prosperity.”
Denis Brunetti, President of Ericsson Viet Nam and Myanmar said: “With its superior reliability, high data speeds and low latency, 5G promises to help mobile operators in Viet Nam manage the growing data traffic more efficiently in the initial phase, followed by country specific consumer and enterprise related 5G use cases being developed over time. 5G will enable Viet Nam to unlock its full potential, accelerating its digital transformation journey and adoption of the Fourth Industrial Revolution – Industry 4.0 – which will drive and create the next wave of sustainable and inclusive socio economic development in Viet Nam, fueled by science, technology and innovation, in line with the Government’s strategic vision.”
The Ericsson Mobility report highlights why 5G success will not be limited to coverage or subscription numbers alone. Its value will also be determined by new use cases and applications, the first of which have already started to emerge. Critical IoT, intended for time-critical applications that demand data delivery within a specified time duration, will be introduced in 5G networks. This will enable a wide range of time-critical services for consumers, enterprises and public institutions across various sectors, with 5G public and dedicated networks.
Cloud gaming is another emerging application category. The combined capabilities provided by 5G networks and edge compute technologies will enable game streaming services on smartphones to compete with a quality of experience (QoE) that is on par with PC or console counterparts, opening up for innovative, immersive games based on mobility.
According to the new Harnessing the 5G Consumer Potential report from Ericsson ConsumerLab, the 5G consumer market could be worth US$31 trillion by 2030 globally, with communications service providers (CSPs) earning $3.7 trillion of that total – a figure that could increase further as new adjacent digital services opportunities arise.
In South East Asia and Oceania, the report estimates that CSPs could earn $297 billion in 5G-enabled consumer revenues by 2030. 5G broadband services market will be worth nearly $229 billion by 2030. Nearly 80 per cent of the total service provider 5G digital services revenue , estimated at $7.5 billion by 2030, will be driven by enhanced video and HiFi music. 5G digital services include video, music, gaming, augmented/virtual reality and consumer IoT services.
Vietnam, Canada join efforts to effectively exploit CPTPP post-COVID-19
The Vietnam Embassy in Canada and the Canada-Vietnam Trade Council co-hosted a webinar on December 3 to discuss trade ties under the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), with future relations in the post-novel coronavirus (COVID-19) period also under discussion.
In terms of relations with Canada, Ambassador Phong noted that goods transactions between both sides are more complementary to each other as opposed to competition. For example, the Vietnamese side exports mobile phones, garments and textiles, footwear, seafood, and furniture to the Canadian market, while simultaneously importing agricultural products such as wheat, soybeans, minerals, chemicals, machinery, and mechanical equipment from the northern American nation. As such, an increasing number of Canadian businessmen consider the country to represent a promising destination for supply chain diversification.
Participants used the event to focus their discussions on finding answers to numerous questions, such as how to more effectively exploit the great potential that exists in the CPTPP moving forward due to global supply chains being restructured during the COVID-19 pandemic. Other topics include how businesses from the two countries can increase mutual understanding, along with what to do in order to encourage Canadian businesses to invest and do more business in the nation.
Cindie-Ève Bourassa, director of the Free Trade Agreement Promotion Division under Global Affairs Canada, shared a common view among participants that the COVID-19 pandemic is creating major supply chain challenges, although the global trading system with agreements like the CPTPP has shown its importance.
The CPTPP therefore represents a “new generation” agreement that offers a great opportunity for local firms to expand their export-import markets, choose business partners, and invest through a sharp reduction in tariffs in a giant market of 500 million people that features 13% of global GDP and 15% of global trade. With the CPTPP being in effect for nearly two years, the trade deal promotes trade, removes non-tariff barriers, and facilitates greater levels of foreign investment.
Furthermore, Canadian investors are competitive in areas that the nation is desperately in need of, such as oil and gas, infrastructure, and clean energy. Education can also be considered a potential area for the two side to boost co-operation in the context that the country currently spends roughly US$3 billion per year on sending students to study abroad, with increasing numbers of Vietnamese students interested in the Canadian curriculum.
Arvind Vijh of the Canada International Office, said that Canadian enterprises need to research and explore business opportunities that exist in the nation as it is not only a member of the CPTPP, but also an active participant in the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) and is a member of ASEAN. Canadian businesses can therefore make the country into a supply base for fast growing markets in Asia amid supply chains moving away from China, he said.
Vietnam can be viewed as an FTA hub in the Asia-Pacific, and Canada has seen a steady increase in the nation’s bilateral trade turnover in recent years, especially following the CPTPP coming into effect.
In 2019, the value of trade exchange between the two countries reached a figure of US$6.1 billion, up 23.4% compared to 2018. This year, bilateral trade is expected to surge by 10% compared to last year with the nation maintaining its position as Canada’s largest trading partner in ASEAN since 2015.
HSBC Navigator puts Vietnamese businesses among most optimistic globally
Vietnamese firms remain more optimistic regarding positive growth and international trade in comparison to their global peers despite the challenges caused by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), according to the latest HSBC Navigator: Now, Next and How report.
The global survey polled over 10,000 companies in 39 countries and territories globally, including 200 companies in the nation. According to the poll’s results, 55% of Vietnamese businesses remain optimistic about growth moving forward, compared to 56% last year, well above the global average of 29%, the report revealed.
Most notably, 59% of domestic firms are predicted to return to pre-COVID-19 levels of profitability by the end of 2021, while 86% of local businesses anticipate that sales will grow next year, far higher than the global and the Asia-Pacific region average growth of 64% and 60%, respectively.
“Vietnam’s remarkable resilience and effective response to the pandemic has been a major contributor to increased optimism. Unlike many other countries, from a purely domestic economy perspective, in the second half of the year, the country is broadly back to a ‘business as usual’ environment,” said Tim Evans, chief executive officer of HSBC Vietnam.
Furthermore, 91% of Vietnamese enterprises also remain positive about increases in international trade in comparison to their global peers. This is despite the majority of local businesses feeling that international trade has become increasingly difficult over the course of the previous year.
Optimism among the domestic business community will also have been further fueled by the signing of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) on November 15.
“RCEP has brought 15 Asian nations together to help drive the agenda around increased cross border trade. As one of the region’s fastest growing and most dynamic economies, Vietnam has much to gain from this far-reaching free trade agreement (FTA),” Evans said.
“Offering faster, more efficient and tariff-free access to a market of some 2.3 billion people, the RCEP can help local firms in Vietnam increase exports and attract high-quality goods for their consumers. This time next year, we all hope that levels of optimism have returned to the global economy,” he added.
Moreover, protectionism continues to be strongly felt, with 90% of Vietnamese companies believing that it is increasing. As a result, price competitiveness, local partnerships, and selling through digital channels represent key strategies to combat it, according to the report.
Rubber exports enjoy 15.8% surge during November
Vietnam raked in 1.51 million tonnes of rubber worth US$1.99 billion during the opening 11 months of the year, representing an annual increase of 0.4% in volume and a decrease of 1.4% in value, with November seeing rubber exports soar by 15.8% to US$303 million, according to the Import and Export Department.
Currently, the average export price throughout the reviewed period fell by 1.8% to US$1,324 per tonne in comparison to the same period from last year.
With regard to export markets, statistics compiled by the United States International Trade Commission revealed that the US imported a total of 1.21 million tonnes of rubber worth US$2.12 billion during the initial nine months of the year, representing a fall of 19.6% in volume and 25.4% in value from last year’s corresponding period.
Throughout the reviewed period, Vietnam represented the 14th largest rubber supplier to the US, with the nation’s market share of total US rubber imports standing at 1.4%.
Furthermore, the country exported 17,620 tonnes of rubber worth US$25.71 million to the US, posting a year-on-year decline of 25% in volume and 17.6% in value.
According to experts, prospects for Vietnamese rubber exports to the US are largely dependent on the North American nation’s efforts to contain the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and its economic recovery.
Vietnam hit by sharp decline in oil and petrol exports
Vietnam exported 1.85 million tonnes of oil and petrol during the inital 10 months of the year at a value of US$787.53 million, with the average price being US$462.7 per tonne, marking an annual fall of 33.9% in volume and 30.6% in value, according to the General Department of Vietnam Customs.
October witnessed the export turnover of oil and petrol suffer a decline, although exports to China recorded an increase of 235.5% in volume. In addition, exports to Malaysia increased by 31% in volume and 45.2% in turnover.
The opening ten months of the year saw Cambodia rank first in terms of the leading consumption markets for Vietnamese petroleum, with 519.104 tonnes, equivalent to over US$204.79 million with an average price of US$394.5 per tonne.
Furthermore, China came in second with 218.206 tonnes valued at US$111.14 million.
During the reviewed period, exports of oil and petrol to foreign markets, such as the Philippines, Indonesia, and Russia, all witnessed declines, with the exception of Malaysia which saw an increase in volume.
VRG earns big from leasing unused properties
The Viet Nam Rubber Group (VRG) has enjoyed the most income from leasing unused facilities and residential areas among all listed industrial zone developers.
Viet Nam’s largest rubber corporation logged a total of VND9.28 trillion (nearly US$400 million) from leasing its properties to companies, ndh.vn reported.
The figure included VND257 billion worth of short-term leases and VND9.03 trillion worth of long-term leases, according to the firm’s third-quarter financial report.
VRG owns 16 industrial parks with a total area of more than 6,500 hectares. In 2021-25, the group plans to raise the total area of industrial parks to 15,000 hectares.
Idico Corporation earned nearly VND6.2 trillion from receiving pre-payments from customers to use its facilities in Phu My, Nhon Trach, My Xuan and Que Vo industrial zones.
Idico is developing a plan to deploy 10 industrial parks nationwide with a total area of 3,270 hectares, most of which are located in the southern region.
Other listed industrial zone developers such as Sai Gon VRG Investment Corp, Sonadezi, Nam Tan Uyen and Viglacera also posted big gains from leasing unused industrial parks’ facilities.
Sai Gon VRG Investment Corp saw its leasing revenue up 11 per cent year-on-year to VND5.93 trillion from VND5.32 trillion, while Sonadezi raised leasing income by 8 per cent year-on-year to VND4.26 trillion.
Companies seeking vacancies at industrial parks often make full pre-payments for their entire terms to ensure their operations at the parks are stable, according to ndh.vn.
Therefore, leasing incomes will be definitely recorded and declared in the industrial park developers’ quarter-end financial reports.
Listed industrial park developers have seen their share prices rocket in recent weeks on expectations foreign companies will move their plants to Viet Nam amid the US-China trade war.
Since July 31, VRG shares – listed on the Ho Chi Minh Stock Exchange (HoSE) as GVR – have increased by a total of more than 110 per cent to VND20,050 apiece on Friday.
Sonadezi shares – traded on the Unlisted Public Company Market (UPCoM) as SNZ – have soared more than 42 per cent since late July to end last week at VND30,800 apiece.
Nam Tan Uyen shares (UPCoM: NTC) surged nearly 112 per cent in the same period to VND256,800 apiece ending last week.
Viglacera stock (HoSE: VGC) jumped nearly 48 per cent in the same period to VND27,800 per share on Friday.
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