Local steel companies must become more competitive

A Toan Thang Steel JSC worker supervises steel billet production at the Song Cong I Industrial Zone in Thai Nguyen Province. — VNA/VNS Photo Danh Lam HA NOI (Biz Hub) — The application of trade defence instruments must ensure harmonisation of interests between producers and consumers in the long term, Ho Nghia Dung, president of the Viet Nam Steel Association said. Dung made the statement in an article to the Vietnam News Agency that local producers must revamp their production technology to build a competitive industry. Although trade defence instruments were essential to protect local production, the use of these instruments might result in inefficiency if it failed to balance the interests of the relevant parties, he added. Dung said trade defence instruments might cause a conflict of interest which had been proved through the recent use of safeguard duties on imported steel products. For example, producers who manufactured steel ingots might support the imposition … [Read more...]

A tailor village outside Hanoi

Thu Huong The entrance to Tu Thuan Village on the outskirts of Hanoi In the early 20th century, a group of Tu Thuan villagers left home for Hanoi to learn how to make suits, ao dai (traditional Vietnamese long dress), and shirts. Some settled down in Hanoi to open their own shops while the rest returned home and taught others sewing techniques and skills. On March 10, 140 out of 150 households and more than 90% of people of working age in the village work at local garment workshops. Those workshops could earn billions of dong in profit a year while workers have incomes of VND7 million (US$315) to VND10 million per month. Two young men learn how to make clothing at a workshop in Tu Thuan Village after having failed in university entrance exams. As interns, they are still paid VND5 million (US$224) a month. Nguyen Minh, a 48-year-old designer, has 25 years’ work experience Nguyen Quang Hoa, 78, belongs to the third generation of Tu Thuan villagers. Hoa, who … [Read more...]

Highest risks doing business with China

VietNamNet Bridge - Relying on some certain trade partners is risky, especially China, which can be unpredictable. Dr. Nguyen Dinh Cung and Dr. Tran Toan Thang from the Central Institute of Economic Management (CIEM) Vietnam's growth rate heavily depends on trade. The trade openness has been increasing rapidly, from 115 percent of GDP in 2003 to 160 percent in 2013. Meanwhile, the figure is on the decrease for ASEAN, from 143 percent to 140 percent. China is among the countries with low trade openness, about 50 percent of GDP. If international trade risks occur, Vietnam would be more vulnerable than other economies. If international trade risks occur, Vietnam would be more vulnerable than other economies. High risks for wooden furniture, farm produce, food CIEM has found there is heaviest reliance in some business fields, including farm produce and food, especially processed food and vegetables. The high risk in exporting food and vegetables to China is due to exports … [Read more...]

Hanoi, HCM City look to crack down on coaches, parking on pavements

The illegal parking of coaches on streets in HCM City in order to collect and drop off passengers has been a headache for local authorities, but coach operators insist measures should be taken to create more favourable conditions for them. Tran Thuy Hanh, a local resident, told the Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper that coaches are encroaching on streets in the inner city, obstructing the view of pedestrians and motorists. Hoang Van Thai, of District 5's Tran Phu Street, complained that dozens of coaches park on the streets every day, and flocks of waiting tourists turn the street into a chaotic scene. Passengers even throw garbage and urinate on the street. In February, Secretary of HCM City's Party Committee Dinh La Thang ordered the installation of "no parking" signs for cars with nine seats or more on Nguyen Thai Binh and Le Thi Hong Gam streets in an effort to regulate traffic in the city. However, the coach operators still reportedly commit violations. In a recent meeting with the … [Read more...]

Cities look to crack down on coaches despite their protests

HCM CITY (VNS) — The illegal parking of coaches on streets in HCM City in order to collect and drop off passengers has been a headache for local authorities, but coach operators insist measures should be taken to create more favourable conditions for them. Tran Thuy Hanh, a local resident, told the Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper that coaches are encroaching on streets in the inner city, obstructing the view of pedestrians and motorists. Hoang Van Thai, of District 5's Tran Phu Street, complained that dozens of coaches park on the streets every day, and flocks of waiting tourists turn the street into a chaotic scene. Passengers even throw garbage and urinate on the street. In February, Secretary of HCM City's Party Committee Dinh La Thang ordered the installation of "no parking" signs for cars with nine seats or more on Nguyen Thai Binh and Le Thi Hong Gam streets in an effort to regulate traffic in the city. However, the coach operators still reportedly commit violations. In a … [Read more...]

HCMC Party chief: No more delays in infrastructure projects

Anh Quan HCMC Party chief Dinh La Thang speaks at a meeting with the Ministry of Transport over the weekend - PHOTO: LE ANH Thang was speaking at a meeting with leaders of the Ministry of Transport and leaders of HCMC government and agencies on Saturday. Bui Xuan Cuong, director of the HCMC Department of Transport, said Metro Line No. 2 linking Ben Thanh Market in District 1 and Tham Luong in District 12 has progressed slowly in the past two years due to design and investment changes. Lenders have agreed on an investment adjustment but the Law on Public Investment requires projects worth over VND10 trillion (around US$446 million) to be approved by the National Assembly (NA). To put the project on fast track, Cuong proposed HCMC seek the Government approval to invite tenders for the already-approved components of the project while waiting for the NA’s approval. Thang said Government and NA permission should be sought for the city to take charge of the metro project, … [Read more...]

Ho Chi Minh City apartment sales up 47 percent in Q4

Photo: winta.com.vn Total apartment sales in Ho Chi Minh City reached nearly 7,700 units in the fourth quarter of 2015, up 47 percent from the previous quarter, according to Savills Vietnam’s Market Brief released on January 29. Sales of Grade A apartments rose 129 percent quarterly. Grade Bs were up 79 percent. Both Grade A and B have reached their highest sales levels in the last five years, thanks to banking support and diversified products. Meanwhile, the office market performed its best in the past four years. The total take-up was 60,000sq.m, up 264 percent from the figure of entire 2014– mostly Grade B and C office space. This year, more than 71,000sq.m in six projects are expected to be made available, pushing the total stock up 4 percent from 2015. Nguyen Toan Thang, Director of the municipal Department of Natural Resources and Environment, said the city collected more than 10.6 trillion VND (481 million USD) in land use fees, up 34.56 percent from … [Read more...]

Passion motivates circus artists to take risks

Video by Thu Van HA NOI (VNS) — The circus has always been about performers attempting precarious and daring acts in exchange for the intangible reward of the roar of the crowd. Circus artists have always put their lives on the line for the audience's entertainment. Those working at the Viet Nam National Circus Federation are no different. "All circus acts are dangerous jobs," Tong Toan Thang, a senior artist who is well-known for his python act and is also a veteran circus performer, said. "If you work in this field, you accept the risks." What keeps them going, given the modest incomes and the hardship the job entails? "When the crowds clap their hands and shout your name, it's something we cherish more than anything else," he said.—VNS … [Read more...]

Int’l circus festival to greet spring 2016

(Cinet)- Circus artists from Vietnam, Mongolia and Laos will entertain audiences in Hanoi capital with extravagant performances to usher in the Year of the Monkey and commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Vietnam Circus Federation. Int’l circus festival to greet spring 2016. Illustrative image. Photo: truongxiec.edu. The four-day festival will be staged everyday from January 14 to 17 at the National Circus of Vietnam at NO. 67-69 Tran Nhan Tong Street. The large-scale programme unites leading circus artists from Viet Nam, Laos and Mongolia. It will feature meticulous and diverse performances, including aerial acrobatics, balancing feats, shows of strength and magic tricks, as well as an animal circus. Many of the performances have won national and international prizes. With a desire to entertain several generations of audiences with circus acts, the organisers have invited many meritorious artists to participate in the Gala. On opening night, a 15-minute welcome … [Read more...]

Int’l circus show rolls into Hanoi

The 2016 International Circus Gala will open on January 14 at the Vietnam Central Circus, Hanoi, in celebration of the 60th founding anniversary of the Vietnam Circus Federation (VCF). The large-scale programme unites leading circus artists from Vietnam, Laos and Mongolia. It will feature meticulous and diverse performances, including aerial acrobatics, balancing feats, shows of strength and magic tricks, as well as an animal circus. Many of the performances have won national and international prizes. With a desire to entertain several generations of audiences with circus acts, the organisers have invited many meritorious artists to participate in the Gala. On opening night, a 15-minute welcome performance inspired by a Russian film honouring performing artists will be directed by acclaimed artist Tong Toan Thang. It will be staged in the circus style with an aim of enabling spectators to imagine VCF's 60-year journey. "This is an art programme that connects the performances, … [Read more...]

Int’l circus show rolls into Ha Noi

Clowning around: The Gala will feature meticulous and diverse performances by leading circus artists from Viet Nam, Laos and Mongolia. — Photo tuoitrethudo.vn HA NOI (VNS) — The 2016 International Circus Gala will open on January 14 at the Viet Nam Central Circus, Ha Noi, in celebration of the 60th founding anniversary of the Viet Nam Circus Federation (VCF). The large-scale programme unites leading circus artists from Viet Nam, Laos and Mongolia. It will feature meticulous and diverse performances, including aerial acrobatics, balancing feats, shows of strength and magic tricks, as well as an animal circus. Many of the performances have won national and international prizes. With a desire to entertain several generations of audiences with circus acts, the organisers have invited many meritorious artists to participate in the Gala. On opening night, a 15-minute welcome performance inspired by a Russian film honouring performing artists will be directed by acclaimed … [Read more...]

Police in southern Vietnam to probe fake buses that cheat, threaten passengers

Police in the southern province of Ba Ria-Vung Tau have been directed to investigate those bogus buses that have been using the brand names of other transport companies to overcharge and threaten passengers. If any sign of violation is spotted, individuals responsible will be severely punished in accordance with the law, Colonel Nguyen Thanh Hung, deputy chief of the Ba Ria-Vung Tau Department of Police, said. Hoa Mai Tourism Service Company and Toan Thang Company, which are the two firms that offer transport services between Vung Tau and Ho Chi Minh City, have been asking competent authorities to probe a case in which several bogus bus operators are allegedly using their brand names to trick, overcharge and even threaten passengers. The two companies have received several complains and reports of passengers claiming that they were conned by the operators of the bogus buses and have worked with local authorities to deal with the situation for several times but no significant … [Read more...]

Fake bus operators trick, overcharge, threaten passengers in southern Vietnam

Two passenger transport companies in the southern province of Ba Ria-Vung Tau are asking competent authorities to probe a case in which several bogus bus operators are allegedly using their brand names to trick, overcharge and even threaten passengers. Hoa Mai Tourism Service Company and Toan Thang Company, which are the two firms that offer transport services between Vung Tau and Ho Chi Minh City, have informed their passengers of the fake coaches that have been illegally leveraging their brand names. Vung Tau is a famous beach city in Ba Ria-Vung Tau, about 120km from Ho Chi Minh City. A recent Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper probe showed that the bogus vehicles often target the passengers near Mien Dong (Eastern) and Mien Tay (Western) Bus Station in Binh Thanh and Binh Tan District, and several stops along National Highway 1. The fraudulent coaches also dupe passengers around the Gieng Nuoc intersection and on Le Van Loc Street in Vung Tau. Their operators have copied the … [Read more...]

Vietnamese composers beginning to eschew love songs, take on social issues

Top songwriter: Singer and composer Pham Toan Thang. — VNS Photo by Thu Anh HCMCITY (VNS) — More Vietnamese composers are writing songs about social problems instead of the traditional topic of love. Singer and songwriter Tran Van Toan's third and latest album, Funk Rock, for example, became an instant hit when it was released in April. The 45-year-old Toan, who has written songs that deal with youth and their problems, has also encouraged them to protect the earth and environment. In songs such as Hai Con De Qua Cau (Two Goats over a Bridge) and Cau Hoi (The Question), he has combined electronic and funk rock. His favourite song, Hai Nguoi Linh (Two Soldiers), won Favourite Song and Best Song voted by audiences and the jury at Bai Hat Viet 2007 (Vietnamese Songs 2007), an annual music show highlights new songs by Vietnamese writers on Viet Nam Television. Many teenagers and youth enjoy Hai Nguoi Linh, a pop song created for the girl band Mat Troi Do, a group of four … [Read more...]

Electronic Payment Incommensurate with Potential

In the globalisation and financial liberalisation trends, strong technology development coupled with sustainable development policies of the Government has provided a solid foundation for payment system modernisation, and enabled citizens and businesses to access public administration services more conveniently and easily. However, e-payment development in Vietnam is still not commensurate with its potential. Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam said, electronic payment accounts for 90 per cent of total payments in developed countries and this helps their GDP expand by 1 per cent. However, Vietnamese people are still familiar with using cash for payment activities. Mr Nguyen Toan Thang, Deputy Governor of the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV), said electronic payment development based on information technology application are of major concerns of the SBV and commercial banks. This deployment process has brought in remarkable achievements, created seamless system-wide connectivity, provided … [Read more...]

Agencies urged to promote e-payment

Van Ly An unidentifi ed shopper searches for fashion items on a shopping website. Although e-commerce in the country has grown fast over the years, cash payments still make up 65% of total sales - PHOTO: THU NGUYET Speaking at the Vietnam E-Payment Forum 2015 (VEPF 2015) in Hanoi on Wednesday, Dam said technical infrastructure facilities for e-payment are ready and the Government has already set a clear target but the habit of consumers to use cash has not changed much. Dam told the forum organized by the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV) and the local news site VnExpress that although e-commerce in the country has grown fast over the past years, cash payments still make up 65% of total sales. "In developed countries, e-payment accounts for 90% of the total and helps their gross domestic product (GDP) grow by an extra 1%," Dam said of the important role of e-payment in an economy. Meanwhile, Bui Quang Tien, head of the Payment Department of the SBV, e-payment made up a mere 5% of … [Read more...]

Deputy PM Vu Duc Dam: Necessary to promote non-cash payment

The Hanoitimes - The e-payment will be one of the important factors to evaluate the development of the country, Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam said at the forum in Hanoi on December 16. The remark was made by Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam at the Vietnam E-Payment Forum in Hanoi on December 16. The Deputy Prime Minister said that the e-commerce in Vietnam has made a rapid progress in the recent years. Deputy Prime Minister speaks at the forum. Vietnam has been ready for e-payment in terms of infrastructure and the Government has set goals to stimulate online transactions for years, yet consumers seem not willing to change, he added. According to Deputy Prime Minister Dam, it is necessary to actively cooperate between government and business to encourage online transactions among domestic consumers. This does not achieve from technology solutions and discounts, the most important factor is changing the habit of consumers, he said. Changing cash usage habit to … [Read more...]

Cash popularity hurting nation’s economy

HA NOI (VNS) — Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam yesterday urged closer co-operation among ministries and sectors to reduce the prevalence of cash payments and create conditions that encourage people to use electronic payment systems. Speaking at the Viet Nam E-Payment Forum 2015 held in Ha Noi, Dam said that although Viet Nam's e-commerce market has seen recent growth, in-cash habits in Viet Nam is still overwhelmingly popular, accounting for 65 per cent of total payment transactions. "This habit has hampered the country's economic development as well as people's living standards," he said. Dam highlighted how other countries' electronic payment behaviour accounts for 90 per cent of their total payment values and helped increase their GDP by about 1 per cent. With more than 120 million mobile subscriptions and more than 40 million internet users in Viet Nam at present, electronic transaction processes have a lot of potential, he said. The Deputy PM said that in 2014, … [Read more...]

Deputy PM: Changing cash-payment habit boosts economic growth

Changing cash usage habit to e-payment will not only boost economic growth but also promote Vietnam as a civilized nation, said Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam on December 16. He made his remarks at the Vietnam E-Payment Forum in Hanoi held by the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV) and VnExpress, an online newspaper. Speakers at the forum. (Source: Banknetvn) Online payment accounts for 90 percent of total transactions in developed countries and the Gross Domestic Products (GDP) hereby rose by about 1 percent, Dam explained. Vietnam has been ready for e-payment in terms of infrastructure and the Government has set goals to stimulate online transactions for years, yet consumers seem not willing to change, he said. The Deputy PM urged for greater coordination between relevant bodies to reduce cash payments alongside the design of incentives to encourage online transactions among local consumers. Dinh Thi My Loan, President of the Vietnam Retailers Association, noted paying in cash … [Read more...]

Deputy PM encourages digital payments in lieu of cash

(VOV) - Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam on December 16 encouraged the use of consumers paying for goods and services electronically as a substitute for using cash in a speech at an e-payment forum held in Hanoi. Certainly Deputy PM Dam said the move could assist in cracking down on ‘black money’ or in other words assist in reducing income illegally obtained or not properly declared for tax purposes. Some economists, he said have estimated that increasing the use of e-payments nationwide could actually benefit the gross national product (GNP) by as much as 1%. He went on to say the government is evaluating a broader strategy to discourage the use of cash and clamp down on Vietnam’s bustling parallel economy that operates outside the legitimate financial system. E-transactions include those made through debit and credit cards, mobile wallets, apps, net banking, electronic clearing services, national electronic fund transfers and immediate payment service … [Read more...]