VN wood and furniture firms eye Mexico, Canada
Mexico and Canada will be promising markets for Viet Nam’s wood and furniture products when the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) takes effect in early 2019, according to the Ministry of Industry and Trade.
Deputy Minister Tran Quoc Khanh said exports to Canada were worth over US$129 million last year and are expected to top $140 million this year.
“The CPTPP will open opportunities for products such as wood flooring and bars to Canada because the market will immediately scrap the import tariff of 3.5 per cent when the agreement comes into effect.
“Products such as plywood, picture frames, door frames and especially furniture will also have an opportunity because import tariffs of between 6 per cent and 9.5 per cent will be eliminated as soon as the agreement comes into effect.
“Wooden handicrafts will also benefit when Canada agrees to abolish the 7 per cent import tariff.”
According to customs figures, Vietnamese firms earned around $9.1 million from exports of wood and furniture products to Mexico last year.
According to the Handicraft and Wood Industry Association of HCM City (HAWA), Mexico is still a new market for Vietnamese furniture, with some 90 enterprises shipping their products there, 65 of them just a few containers each to test the market.
According to Vietnamese agencies and Mexican enterprises, Vietnamese furniture has met quality requirements in fastidious markets like the EU, US and Japan, and so could penetrate Latin American markets without much difficulty.
Huynh Van Hanh, deputy chairman of HAWA, said Mexico wants to expand trade with APEC economies, including Viet Nam.
“Therefore, Vietnamese firms should start studying the market so that they can capitalise on opportunities brought by the CPTPP.”
Khanh said, “Mexico currently is not a big market for Vietnamese wood and furniture products because the country has high import tariffs of 10-15 per cent.
“However, enterprises should pay great attention to the market and prepare to enter it because under the CPTPP, Mexico has agreed to eliminate import tariffs on all wooden products, including plywood, particle boards, wood bars, wood flooring, furniture, and exteriors within a maximum of 10 years.”
By checking the prices of some products sold at Walmart Mexico, Vietnamese furniture firms believe their products are capable of competing with products available in the market.
But Hanh said businesses should also keep an eye on the prices of Chinese products exported to this market. Amid the US-China trade tensions, Chinese firms would promote exports of their products to other markets.
“If there is good preparation, Vietnamese firms will surely get positive results in this attractive market.”
Global furniture demand was worth around $428 billion last year and is expected to rise by 3.5 per cent this year. Furniture exports by 100 countries amounted to $141 billion last year, with China being the largest exporter, accounting for 39 per cent, followed by Germany, Italy, Poland, and Viet Nam.
Dang Luu Phuong Anh of the International Financial Group said “Viet Nam accounts for only 6 per cent of the global wood and wood products market, meaning there is ample growth potential.
“Exports of Vietnamese furniture have increased 13 per cent year-on-year since 2010 and is expected to continue with its growth trajectory as the industry becomes more sustainable and integrated.”
But to add value, Vietnamese firms need to focus on improving design, adopting automation and building brands, according to experts.
Nguyen Quoc Khanh, chairman of AA Corporation and HAWA, said building a national brand for the furniture industry is a strategic investment that would enable it to make great strides in future.
Khanh said Vietnamese wood companies have gone beyond mere processing and have signed direct contracts with the world’s leading furniture companies.
Wood products made in Viet Nam now also adorn major projects such as the Park Hyatt St. Kitts and Nevis (the Caribbean), the six-star hotel Rosewood Phnom Penh (Cambodia) and Gem Centre and Park Hyatt in HCM City, he said.
“The world is increasingly receptive to Vietnamese furniture thanks to their high quality, refinement, production from legal timber and other factors.
“Viet Nam can export not only individual furniture products but also ‘interior spaces’, adding more value.”
Khanh quoted leading branding experts as saying Viet Nam is eminently capable of building a national brand for its wood industry since the industry possesses advantages in terms of timber sources, a young and skilled workforce and improving technologies.
Currently all Vietnamese furniture exporting firms use legally sourced timber for their products mainly from plantations and the rest imported from countries with sustainable forest certification, he said.
Experts including Khanh said it is imperative to build a national brand for Vietnamese wood products to gain access to the international market. Having a brand would increase the value of the country’s wood products, they said.
Trade deals to bring investment
In 2019, foreign direct investment (FDI) in Viet Nam will be significant thanks to new-generation free trade agreements that have already been signed or are under discussion with various partners.
“Especially in the context of the trade war between the US and China, investment flows into Viet Nam will be stronger next year,” Nguyen Van Hung, chairman of the Binh Duong Province –based Becamex IDC, was quoted as saying in Viet Nam Investment Review (Dau tu) newspaper.
“Our company has carried out investment promotion for a long time in many countries like Singapore, Japan, South Korea, and the US and Europe, and FDI will strongly flow into Viet Nam and Binh Duong Province as a result.”
At last month’s Horasis Asia Meeting, many foreign corporations had signed memorandums of understanding with Becamex IDC to invest, he revealed.
Nguyen Thanh Truc, director of Binh Duong Province’s Planning and Investment Department, said: “Relevant authorities and industrial park infrastructure developers in Binh Duong Province will promote trade and review demand by enterprises to expand to create the most favourable conditions for foreign enterprises.”
Binh Duong attracted around US$1.6 billion worth of FDI this year, down from $2.8 billion in 2017.
“This year, there were no big FDI project, and registered capital of each project was also low,” Truc said.
The biggest project was worth $135.2 million by US fund Warburg Pincus.
The neighbouring Dong Nai Province, another locality which has traditionally attracted a lot of FDI, also reported $1.8 billion worth by the end of November.
The biggest project was by Singapore’s KCC Company and worth $60 million.
Le Hoai Quoc, head of the Sai Gon High Tech Park, said a $500 million battery project by a US company to supply Tesla would not be able to complete procedures this year and would instead begin production next year.
Tourism fuels shopping at traditional market in Danang
Han Market in Danang City is crowded with tourists
Vendors at Han Market, a traditional wet market in Danang City, make more than VND1 billion each in average annual revenue this year, up 20% over last year, mainly thanks to tourists’ spending, said Huynh Duc Trung, head of the Travel Management Office of the Danang Tourism Department, citing statistics from the tax office in Hai Chau District, where the market is located.
The market welcomes 500 to 600 tourists daily—mainly domestic travelers and foreign visitors from China, South Korea and Western Europe.
According to a survey by the municipal Department of Tourism, domestic tourists tend to buy shrimp paste, salted vegetables and fruit. Meanwhile, Koreans often buy ao dai (Vietnamese traditional long dress); footwear; and fruit, such as mangoes, bananas, durian, litchis and rambutan.
Chinese tourists are keen on agarwood, rubber, cashew nuts and dried fruits.
Regarding tourists’ spending, Chinese tourists tend to buy products in large volumes.
Trung noted that a large number of tourists have visited and shopped at Han Market, raising the income of local vendors. There are 522 vendors at Han Market, who have recorded total revenue of VND533 billion this year.
The market is also a destination on the city tour, which also take in Danang Museum of Cham Sculpture, Danang Cathedral and the Museum of Danang.
Nguyen Thanh Thao, a souvenir trader at Han Market, said her stall’s revenue has increased every year for the last three years thanks to the spending of tourists, particularly Koreans.
Meanwhile, Truong Thi Thanh Minh, owner of a well-known salted fish stall, said that many tourists from Hanoi and China tend to buy hundreds of kilograms of salted fish. The city’s traceability program for some food products has been helpful for vendors in the market, she added.
Danang to recognize typical products
Many enterprises in Danang City have submitted applications to the municipal Department of Industry and Trade to have their products recognized as typical products of the city.
The program is part of the city’s plan to adopt cultural diplomacy strategies until 2020.
The recognized products will carry “Danang Value” labels, said Phan Van Kha, director of the Danang Department of Industry and Trade.
He said that the program was aimed at boosting the sales of typical products of the city, contributing to introducing Danang to the world and promoting the city’s sustainable socioeconomic development.
VNRea proposes scrapping regulation on loan interest cap
The Vietnam National Real Estate Association (VNRea) has proposed the Government abolish a regulation in Decree 20/2017/NDCP, in which the total deductible loan interest of enterprises must not exceed 20% of their net profits.
At a seminar, titled, “Decree 20/2017/NDCP: shortcomings and solutions,” held by VNRea in Hanoi today, December 14, VNRea chairman Nguyen Tran Nam said the regulation was not in line with the 2014 Enterprise Law and the Tax Law.
The regulation has caused difficulties for enterprises, especially real estate firms and startups, which have high demand for capital for their production and business activities.
Also, loan interest for businesses involved in associated transactions will be doubled, causing heavy losses. The subjects of the regulation are not clarified either, Nam added.
Nam also opposed the view that the regulation helps reduce enterprises’ loans. He proposed the tax authorities fully review the regulation.
In addition, the decree is applicable to both foreign and Vietnamese enterprises, for which accounting standards and operating conditions are different. Consequently, domestic firms may be put at a disadvantage.
Therefore, it is necessary to draw up a specific roadmap, study international practices and take into account the situation and capital structure of local enterprises.
However, VNRea suggested immediately suspending the application of the regulation and amending it to avoid misunderstanding.
Local firms advised on entering Halal markets
Almost half of the ASEAN population are Muslims, but Vietnamese businesses seem to be indifferent or not know how to provide products and services for this vast market, heard Export Forum 2018 on December 14.
According to the HCMC Investment and Trade Promotion Center (ITPC) at the forum, the Halal industry in ASEAN holds much potential. This is regarded as a significant opportunity for Vietnamese firms.
Nguyen Thi Ngoc Hang of the Halal certification agency said that last year the Muslim population accounted for some 42% of the total population in Southeast Asia. Regional countries with a developed Halal industry include Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand and Brunei.
However, as the number of Muslims in Vietnam remains small, making up less than 1% of the country’s population, the production and provision of Halal-certified products remains new to local firms, according to Hang.
Hang said that though the markets of products for Muslims do not have the high requirements called for by U.S. and European markets, Halal requirements are strict and varied in different countries, making it difficult for firms when working to observe such sets of requirements.
As ITPC director Pham Thiet Hoa noted, firms should have separate strategies to approach Muslim markets, as it would be difficult for certain firms to penetrate the markets without Halal certification. Firms should well understand Islamic customs and cultures to manufacture appropriate products.
According to speakers at the forum, once it is possible to sell to Muslims in ASEAN, firms can work to expand to Muslim customers throughout the world. The Halal industry is growing, with annual revenues reaching US$2,300 billion.
Regarding the ASEAN and Chinese markets, in general, speakers agreed that there is still room for Vietnamese goods.
However, Hoa said that to well exploit the ASEAN market, firms should participate in trade promotion and market research activities to enhance connectivity with target markets. In addition, they need to research demands, prices, tastes, trends, distribution systems, transport, packaging and cultures, along with other concerns.
Firms should also coordinate and seek support from national authorities to boost trade promotion in potential markets, Hoa noted.
Meanwhile, according to the Chinese consulate, China is the second largest market in the world, with 1.3 billion people. China regards Vietnam as an important market, whereas China is Vietnam’s major export market for phones and components, rice, vegetables, rubber, crude oil, cement, clinker, seafood, cashew nuts, pepper and coffee.
An Giang approves projects worth VND27.6 trillion
The People’s Committee of An Giang Province in southern Vietnam has in principle approved 26 projects worth a combined VND27.6 trillion (US$1.18 billion).
Speaking at an investment promotion conference today, December 15, the province’s chairman, Vuong Binh Thanh, said the projects are committed largely to the sectors of agriculture, trade, services, tourism, industry, construction and healthcare.
Local authorities also awarded certificates for investment commitments to nine investors, with total capital of some VND105 trillion.
The provincial government called upon investors to get involved in 60 projects, covering hi-tech agriculture, ecotourism, processing and supporting industries, among others.
Thanh pledged to create favorable conditions for investors to set up shop in his province. “I believe that these projects will have impacts and contribute greatly to the An Giang economy, create jobs, and raise revenue, as well as help assist its social welfare works,” he said.
Within the Mekong Delta region, An Giang is a leader in agricultural production and one of the leading localities in aqua farming and seafood exports, according to economist Tran Du Lich, a member of the prime minister’s advisory team.
He added that An Giang is also known as a province where tourism and services contribute greatly to local gross domestic product growth.
In order to bolster its economic growth, he proposed that the local government should change the priorities of the agriculture sector and develop its processing industries. He explained that processing industries should serve as the basis for agricultural production.
Processing firms and their markets will determine the scale of agricultural areas, he argued, adding that the core of in-depth agricultural production is that agricultural products will become material sources for processing industries.
Also, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc requested that the local government pay more attention to improving the quality of human capital and the area’s transport infrastructure, in order to attract more investments and develop the local economy.
The Prime Minister also noted that investors who have already committed to local projects should speed up their implementation.
“For businesses, An Giang is a land of great potential, not only for rice, but also for tourism,” he said, and he expected investors to join in boosting the economy of An Giang Province, in particular, and the entire Mekong Delta region.
Vietjet proposes building aircraft hangar in Danang
Local budget carrier Vietjet has written to the Ministry of Transport, asking for land for the construction of an aircraft maintenance hangar at Danang International Airport.
Vietjet proposed the ministry and the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam allocate roughly one hectare of land in the airport’s north wing. Once the proposal is approved, the carrier will execute and complete the project quickly, while meeting quality requirements.
Vietjet currently operates nearly 100 international and domestic flights a day and seeks to launch new routes in the coming period. Also, several aircraft from its fleet have been parked overnight at the airport to ensure the smooth operation of the current routes, which is why the carrier needs the aircraft hangar.
Moreover, its fleet is projected to reach 100 aircraft by 2020 from the current 65 A320 and A321 jetliners, while it has yet to set up a maintenance facility, causing multiple obstacles in operations at the airport.
The low-cost airline has been requesting land for the proposed project since 2015, but consideration of its proposal was suspended, pending the completion of the dioxin cleanup in the north wing.
The United States Agency for International Development and Vietnam’s Ministry of National Defense have now announced the completion of the dioxin cleanup and have handed over the land to the transport ministry for planning further infrastructure projects at the airport, Vietjet said in its latest proposal.
Danang needs over 100,000 hotel rooms by 2030
The central coastal city of Danang is expected to need a combined 109,000 hotel rooms in major coastal and central areas by 2030, according to a Department of Tourism report.
The report, which has been sent to the city’s leaders, is part of a master plan to develop the lodging facility system in the city until 2025, with a vision toward 2030. It is aimed at assessing the density of accommodation facilities across all districts of the city in relation to traffic infrastructure, drainage systems and other technical infrastructure, as well as supply and demand.
In 2020, of the 40,600 rooms needed, four-and-five star hotels are expected to supply more than 14,500 rooms and one-to-three star ones over 21,100 rooms, accounting for 35.8% and 52% of the total number, respectively.
It is necessary to generally assess the growth rate of lodging facilities; determine whether an imbalance exists between types of accommodation facilities, room rates, and the number of guests at these facilities; and take into account customers’ preferences for various kinds of lodging facilities to develop an appropriate lodging system, according to leaders of the city.
Despite such a development plan, there are concerns over a surplus of hotel rooms in the coastal city.
Nguyen Duc Quynh, vice chairman of the Danang Hotel Association and deputy general director of Furama Resort Danang, said that there is an oversupply of hotel rooms at the moment, causing room prices at one-to-five star hotels and resorts to decline. Some have even halved their room charges.
Quynh suggested more flights, increased promotion activities in new markets and visa relaxation could help deal with the imbalance of hotel room supply and demand.
In addition, Danang is planning to develop water-based tourism by offering extra tours and building new routes in 2019. A series of new products and services will be provided on ships to attract tourists.
The city alone has 24 cruise ships eligible for operation. Of the total, 20 ships operate on the Han River-Tran Thi Ly Bridge route and another four ships serve the Danang Bay-Son Tra Peninsula route.
According to the report, Danang welcomed more than 498,000 tourists in 2018, up a whopping 42% against 2017. Further, over 595,000 passengers are expected to arrive in the city in 2019, rising by 20% compared with 2018.
The city’s waterway tourism sector mainly attracts international travelers who make up 90% of the total.
Export prices of Vietnam’s farm produce decline
Key Vietnamese agricultural products such as coffee, pepper, cashew, rubber and cassava are facing a sharp fall in export prices, Thanh Nien newspaper reported.
Despite the hike in coffee export volume, the decline in prices has kept the coffee sector from thriving. The country shipped 1.7 million tons of coffee to foreign markets in January-November, up 23% in volume, while the value amounted to US$3.3 billion, up a mere 3.2% year-on-year.
The average export price of Vietnamese coffee plummeted by 17% year-on-year to some US$1,890 per ton, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
The fall negatively affected sales of local coffee, which sells for VND34,600-VND35,200 per kilogram this month, down VND700-VND900 per kilogram against last month. As a result, the excess supply of coffee in the global market will put the coffee price under pressure.
An estimated surplus of 4-5 million bags of Conilon Robusta coffee from Brazil has been exported this year.
Besides coffee, Vietnam saw some major exports of farm produce suffering a drop in price in the 10-month period.
In particular, the pepper export price averaged some US$3,200 per ton, dropping by 38.2% year-on-year. Although the exports rose by 9% in volume, the value slid by 32.5%. The pepper exports earned US$718 million in revenue.
In addition, in 2017, pepper exports generated some US$1.1 billion, 22% lower than the result of 2016.
Due to the redundant supply in the global market, the domestic pepper price dipped to VND55,000 per kilogram this month, edging down VND3,000-VND5,000 per kilogram versus the price last month.
Also, peeled cashew is priced at some US$9,200 per ton, down 7% year-on-year. The country shipped 342,000 tons worth US$3.1 billion to foreign markets over the 11-month period, up 6% in volume and down 3% in value over the year-ago period.
In addition, exports of cassava and cassava-made products amounted to an estimated 2.2 million tons, valued at US$886 million, dropping by 36% in volume and 2.6% in value year-on-year. Meanwhile, rubber exports soared by 15% in volume to 1.4 million tons but generated a mere US$1.9 billion, edging down 5.7% year-on-year.
MWG shuts down e-commerce platform Vui Vui
E-commerce platform Vui Vui, a unit of Mobile World Investment Corp. (MWG), has closed its doors after nearly two years of operation, reported the local media.
When customers visit its website at vuivui.com, they will automatically be redirected to the ecommerce site of the convenience store chain Bach Hoa Xanh at bachhoaxanh.com, another subsidiary of MWG, which mainly offers food items and other necessities.
The Vui Vui website was developed in 2016 and put into operation a year later with the aim of serving the shopping needs of residents in HCMC.
During its launch two years ago, MWG chairman Nguyen Duc Tai expected vuivui.com to earn higher revenue than its other two chains – thegioididong.com and dienmayxanh.com – over the next five years.
However, the revenue earned by the ecommerce platform fell short of his expectations. In 2017, it earned some VND73 billion (US$3.1 million) in revenue, a mere 0.1% of the entire earnings of MWG that year, according to a report from the corporation.
HCMC looks to boost consumption of farm produce
The HCMC Department of Industry and Trade has written to the municipal government seeking approval for a program to push up the consumption and value of Vietnamese farm produce, Nguoi Lao Dong newspaper reported.
Improving product quality will be done under VietGap, GlobalGao and Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) standards. Also, investment in packaging and designs, registration of brands and origin traceability will boost the value of Vietnamese farm produce and help it further penetrate into foreign markets.
Accordingly, HCMC and other provinces will set criteria for allowing goods to be transported to the city. The city only receives and consumes standard products, with brands and origin notes printed on the packaging.
The move is aimed at helping manufacturers accept more responsibility, making it effective for governance and building a safe food chain in the city.
Under the program, HCMC will impose requirements on materials used by the city’s food suppliers to form a close connection chain between producers, distributors and customers.
Meanwhile, manufacturers, farming households and cooperatives can register for participation in the program, committing to turning out high-quality products.
Nguyen Ngoc Hoa, deputy director of the HCMC Department of Industry and Trade, said the program is expected to ensure the efficiency of the project named, “Developing the domestic market in tandem with the campaign to call for prioritizing Vietnamese goods.”
The campaign has been in place for a few years, positively influencing customers’ priorities in selecting Vietnamese products. However, its results have failed to highlight the in-depth manufacturing process and diversity of products.
As such, the department has proposed solutions to reforming and enhancing the efficiency of the campaign and transforming the “Vietnamese people prioritize Vietnamese products” program into the “Vietnamese products conquer Vietnamese people” program, which is designed to boost the quality and in-depth manufacturing process of goods, raise producers’ responsibility and increase customers’ confidence in the products.
The city is home to over 10 million people, whose average income is reportedly the highest in the country, paving the way for local goods consumption.
Further, HCMC is also a key supplier for localities across the country and a major exporter. If the city applies effective solutions, manufacturing restructuring, logistics projects, food safety management, trademark building and smart urban development will go well.
Ascott opens first serviced apartment building in Binh Duong
CapitaLand’s wholly owned serviced residence business unit, The Ascott Limited (Ascott), has opened its first Citadines-branded serviced residence building in Binh Duong Province.
The 204-unit Citadines Central Binh Duong is located on Binh Duong Avenue, Thuan An Town, a 30-minute drive from Binh Duong New City or a 40-minute drive from HCMC.
“We continue to bolster Ascott’s position as the largest international lodging player in Vietnam by launching the first Citadines apart’hotel in Binh Duong Province, where we see a limited supply of quality accommodation,” said Lew Yen Ping, country general manager for Ascott Vietnam.
She went on to say that the province is driven by the steady inflow of foreign direct investments into its manufacturing, processing and real estate sectors.
“We are delighted to establish a first-mover advantage and are confident of making Citadines Central Binh Duong a preferred accommodation for the underserved independent business travelers and development projects in Binh Duong Province,” she said.
The 19-storey building offers business and leisure travelers 204 units, ranging from 35-square meters, as one-bedroom studios, to 71-square meter two-bedroom apartments. Each apartment is furnished and comes with a fully equipped kitchen, separate living room and dining area, as well as complimentary wireless internet access, a smart LED television, a washing machine and other modern amenities.
Guests can enjoy a comprehensive range of lifestyle facilities including an outdoor swimming pool and children’s wading pool, fitness center, sauna, residents’ lounge, café and restaurant.
In addition, it is convenient for guests to customize their stay with a menu of optional services such as laundry and dry cleaning.
The property also provides a 24-hour reception desk and security, housekeeping, a complimentary shuttle bus service to Aeon Mall, the Song Be Golf Course and residents’ programmes to assist guests in settling into their new home.
To celebrate the opening of Citadines Central Binh Duong, Ascott is offering a 20% discount of Best Flexible Rates for stays from now until February 28, 2019.
In Vietnam, Ascott offers the growing number of travellers a wide range of serviced residences and business hotels across key cities such as Hanoi, Haiphong, Halong, HCMC, Nha Trang and Danang, as well as Binh Duong Province, with over 5,000 units across 22 properties, and aims to have 7,000 units by 2020.
Japanese firms seek to recruit Vietnamese labourers
At the event
An exchange programme between enterprises operating in Japan’s Aichi prefecture and international students took place at the University of Nagoya last weekend as part of Japan’s recruitment activities.
Jointly organised by the Vietnamese Alumni Association in Aichi prefecture Association in Aichi prefecture (VARONET), the Vietnamese Students and Youth Union in Central Japan (VYSA Tokai) and relevant organisations, the event attracted over 50 Japanese companies and organisations such as Denso, Marubushi, Kanefusa, and around 200 foreign students, including those from Vietnam.
The event aimed to promote connection between foreign students in Japan with local firms which have demand for international human resources.
It also offered a good chance for students to pick necessary information related to the Japanese labour market, and learn experience from those who had studied and worked in Japan for many years.
Representatives from Japanese firms and Aichi’s international cooperation department expressed their high hope of students, especially Vietnamese ones. They also set criteria for recruiting staff in the near future.
Nguyen Ba Quang from VARONET highlighted the significance of the event, saying that it marks progress in labour cooperation between Vietnam and Japan in general and Aichi prefecture in particular.
Located in the central south of Japan, Aichi is considered an industrial hub of the country where international groups such Toyota Motor and Denso place their headquarters. The locality is very attractive to foreign labourers, including Vietnamese.
Vietcombank reduces holdings at other banks
Vietcombank (VCB) has recently announced it sold a large number of Military Bank (MBB) and Eximbank (EIB) shares on the stock markets to reduce its ownership ratios at the banks to 5 per cent in each as regulated by the central bank.
Accordingly, VCB sold 23.7 million MBB shares from November 16 to 30, reducing its holding at MBB from 6.97 per cent to 5.87 per cent. MBB shares were traded at VND20,000-21,000 each on the HCM Stock Exchange (HoSE) during that time.
More than 35 million EIB shares were also sold by VCB on December 4, when EIB shares were traded at nearly VND15,100 apiece on HoSE. The sale moved VCB’s holding at EIB to 5.39 per cent from 8.24 per cent.
The average prices of the sales were higher than the starting prices of VND19,641for MBB shares and nearly VND14,500 for EIB shares.
VCB will have to continue selling MBB and EIB shares until its holdings at the banks reduce to 5 per cent to meet the central bank’s regulation on holding shares at other credit institutions. Under the central bank’s Circular 36, commercial banks are allowed to hold shares in a maximum of two other credit institutions, with the stake in each not exceeding 5 per cent of the total charter capital of that institution.
Earlier, analysts from the Saigon Securities Inc (SSI) estimated that at the initial price of VND19,641 and VND14,497 per MBB and EIB share, respectively, Vietcombank will gain revenue of nearly VND1.05 trillion and VND657.7 billion from the divestments.
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CMC Telecom introduces cloud ecosystem
CMC Telecom has introduced its two Cloud services – Elastic Compute and Elastic GPU – which are suitable for many different consumer segments.
Using modern virtualisation technology, multi-layer security and multi-tasking management, CMC Cloud solutions are currently being deployed for many domestic enterprises.
Compared to a physical server, CMC Cloud helps customers to cut down on infrastructure investment, initial operation and management costs and wasted time, minimising the impact on production and business operation.
Elastic Compute provides Cloud servers to customers who have the need to operate software, websites and data storage. Elastic GPU provides customers exclusive new technology. GPU virtualisation server supports complex mathematical problems such as Machine Learning, AI, video and image analysis and Big Data.
In 2018, CMC Telecom introduced its Smart Camera solution and Big Data for chain-style business and applied AI to support online marketing and IBM Cloud Private for specific sectors such as banks, financial institutions and insurance companies.
CMC Telecom was named The Best Cloud Computing Service Provider in Vietnam by HCM City Computer Association.
The company has become a partner of the world’s top Cloud service providers like Amazon Web Service (AWS), Microsoft, Google and IBM. CMC Telecom is currently the only partner chosen by IBM to implement a portal of IBM Cloud Private service management in Viet Nam.
Dang Tung Son, Deputy CEO of CMC Telecom, said: “CMC Cloud solution helps customer accelerate the digital transformation process.”
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National chemicals database plays crucial role in chemicals management: official
The national database on chemicals will play an important role in the work of chemicals management, significantly contributing to the development of the socio-economic sectors as a whole and the chemical industry in particular, an official said.
Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade, Cao Quoc Hung, made the statement during a ceremony that the ministry held in Hanoi last week to announce the official operation of the national chemicals database.
The database storage system, at www.chemicaldata.gov.vn, has a sufficient function of providing information on the laws, policies, regulations and administrative formalities related to the imports, exports, production and use of chemicals.
In his remarks, Hung said that, over the past few years, Vietnam’s chemical industry has constantly maintained a development and growth pace at a two-digit rate, contributing to the growth of the entire industry as well as to socio-economic development.
However, chemical activities in the world and Vietnam have recorded serious incidents causing damage to property, human health and the environment, requiring stricter management and the application of information technology to strengthen efficiency and transparency, and to reduce administrative procedures to create favourable conditions for businesses in the field, he stated.
Earlier, in implementing the Prime Minister’s direction on the building of a project to develop a list of national chemicals and the national chemicals database, the Ministry of Industry and Trade assigned the Chemicals Department to work with relevant agencies, including several from Japan, to implement and finalise the building of the Vietnam national chemicals database.
Nguyen Van Thanh, Director of the Chemicals Department, said that the building of the database aims to enhance the operational efficiency of state management agencies, at both the central and local levels, and support businesses in implementing their chemical activities.
The system is also an official information channel that meets the demand for accessing and exploiting data in service of companies in performing chemicals management regulations as well as developing plans to control the possible risks and hazard of chemicals to the environment and the community, he said.
Vietjet CEO ranked 44th among the world’s most 100 powerful women
Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Vietnam’s budget airline Vietjet Air, has been ranked 44th in the annual list of the world’s most 100 powerful women, recently released by Forbes magazine.
Accordingly, Thao moved up 11 places compared to last year’s ranking. Her actual net worth as of December 6, 2018, was estimated at US$2.6 billion, much greater than the 2017 figure of US$1.98 billion.
The 48-year-old businesswoman is the co-founder and Chairwoman of Sovico Holdings, President and CEO of Vietjet Air, and Permanent Vice Chairwoman of HDBank. She is also the only self-made female billionaire in Southeast Asia.
In 2017 and 2018, Thao alternatively got Vietjet Air and HDBank listed on the Ho Chi Minh Stock Exchange (HOSE). She is currently the second richest on the Vietnamese stock market.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel was named the most powerful woman in 2018 by Forbes, followed by Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Theresa May and Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, Christine Lagarde.
Members of the 2018 ranking represent women in six categories – business, technology, finance, media & entertainment, politics & policy, and philanthropy. To determine the rank within each category, as well as overall rank on the list of 100, Forbes applied four metrics: money, media, impact, and spheres of influence.
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