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BUSINESS IN BRIEF 11/3   2010-03-11 - VietNamNet/VNA

ABB inaugurates new factory in Vietnam

 

 
ABB, the leading power and automation technology group, opened a new plant for manufacturing power products in the northern province of Bac Ninh’s Tien Son Industrial Zone on March 11.

 

The 30 million USD plant is part of ABB’s plan to build production capacity in fast-growing markets, intended to help Vietnam to meet the growing electricity demand while maintaining grid reliability.

 

Chief of ABB’s Power Products division, Bernhard Jucker, said this new power plant was expected to employ more than 100 workers.

 

Vietnam’s 2010 exports still rely on key markets

 

Having faced numerous barriers while expanding to new export markets, many local businesses have temporarily put such efforts on hold to focus on key markets with which they have strong relationships.

 

According to the Ministry of Industry and Trade , Vietnam made a great effort to get a better foothold in markets in Africa, the Middle East and Latin America in 2010. However, these markets are far away from Vietnam and have various differences in terms of customs, culture and consumption habits. As a result, progress remains limited despite concerted efforts from both sides.

 

A number of exporters have even refused to ship products to Russia - a traditional market which is expected to help them boost their overall export turnover - due to import tariff barriers and the methods used to calculate taxes.

 

Chairman of the Vietnam Textile and Apparel Association (Vitas) Le Quoc An said the European Union (EU), Japan and the US remain the top choices for domestic companies.

 

The opinion is fuelled by the fact that most of the 57 overseas trade promotion projects funded by the Ministry of Industry and Trade target these markets. Along with such programmes, the enterprises join in specialised fairs to introduce their products abroad.

 

From April to October, a number of associations will participate in fairs and exhibitions in the US . Vitas plans to take part in the GlobalTex Fair in Los Angeles and the Magic Show Fair in Las Vegas , while the Vietnam Timber and Forest Product Association will join an international fair and exhibition on wooden furniture in Chicago and the Vietnam Coffee and Cocoa Association will conduct a fact-finding tour in New York .

 

In the EU market, the Vietnam Cooperative Alliance, the Vietnam Software Association and the Trade Promotion Centre for Agriculture will participate in fairs in Italy , Germany and France , respectively.

 

Also, domestic businesses are striving to fully tap the advantages offered by the Vietnam-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement to boost the export of garments, footwear, handicraft products, wooden furniture and agro-fishery products to this market.

 

Experts forecast that this year’s exports will not see a breakthrough growth as Vietnam’s key markets have yet to recover completely, citing earnings of 8.9 billion USD in the first two months – an equal volume to that of the same period last year.

 

Furniture expo opens in HCM City

 

Some 150 local and foreign enterprises are taking part in the Vietnam International Furniture & Home Accessories Fair 2010 (VIF 2010) which opened on March 11 in Ho Chi Minh City.

 

The fair was held by the HCM Handicraft and Wood Industry Association in an effort to help Vietnamese wood processing and handicraft enterprises rebound and increase exports.

 

At the event, domestic and foreign companies from Malaysia , Singapore , the UK and China will exhibit their products at 600 booths.

 

Addressing the opening ceremony, Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Thanh Bien said that with high-quality and competitive products, Vietnam is one of two leading wood exporters in the Southeast Asian region, adding that Vietnam’s wood products have been introduced in 120 countries and territories worldwide.

 

VIFA 2010 also includes business activities, workshops and seminars such as “The Furniture Industry in Germany: Is the Crisis Over, or Are Times Getting Harder?” by the editor-in-chief of Moebel Mark magazine, “New Technology in Finishing Wood Products” by Bayer Vietnam, and “Legal and Environment Requirements of EU and US Furniture Markets” by the Vietnamese-Germany Forestry Cooperation Programme (GTZ).

 

VIFA 2009 welcomed 15,000 visitors from 59 countries and territories and helped participating companies seek contracts worth 70 million USD.

 

The year 2010 marks the official joining of VIFA 2010 to the usual roster of International Furniture & Home Deco fairs for the seven members of the ASEAN Furniture Industry Council (AFIC).

 

AFIC members are Indonesia , Malaysia , Myanmar , the Philippines , Singapore , Thailand and Vietnam.

 

VNAT: Vietnam has great potential in tourism

 

Vietnam has great potential in tourism, boasting famous beauty spots, world-recognised assets of natural and cultural heritage, a unique culture and diversified tourist services.

 

Deputy General Director of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT) Hoang Thi Diep delivered the statement at a reception held on March 10 on the sidelines of the ongoing travel trade show in Berlin (ITB Berlin).

 

Vietnamese Ambassador to Germany Do Hoa Binh, representatives from Vietnamese tourist companies and the national flagship carrier Vietnam Airlines and international friends attended the reception.

 

Vietnam this year will organise a number of festivities, such as the Hue Festival 2010 and the 1,000th Anniversary of Thang Long-Hanoi, promising to fascinate visitors, Diep went on to say.

 

The annual show attracted the participation of more than 40 Vietnamese tourist companies including big names such as Vietravel, Saigontourist and Mailinhtourism.

 

Right on the first day, many of them had reportedly secured contracts with foreign partners.

 

ITB Berlin is the world’s leading travel and trade show. This year, it is luring over 11,120 tourist businesses from 187 countries and territories. At least 170,000 officials, entrepreneurs and visitors are expected to join the show.

 

Vietnam, Poland want to promote trade ties

 

Vietnamese and Polish entrepreneurs gathered in a meeting in Hanoi on March 11 to strengthen mutual understanding in order to promote trade and economic ties.

 

At the meeting held by the Polish Embassy, Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Cam Tu called on the entrepreneurs to carry on seeking business opportunities towards specific contracts. He said he hoped bilateral trade ties would be raised to a new height in the coming time.

 

Two-way trade standing at 230 million USD last year has not yet matched the potentials of the two countries, said Tu.

 

Tu went on to say that Poland has great development potential in Europe and its integration into the European Union has created conditions for Vietnam to expand relations with the EU.

 

Poland will be a gate to the EU for Vietnam ’s exports, affirmed Tu.

 

Referring to the economic structure, Tu reckoned that the two economies could support each other well.

 

For his part, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Pawel Wojciechowski suggested that the two countries should explore new fields of cooperation, such as hi-technology, public services, environmental protection, agriculture and tourism in addition to heavy industries, namely mining, energy and shipbuilding.

 

The two countries should promptly wrap up negotiations and sign investment protection and encouragement agreements, hold more exchanges of business delegations, strengthen trade promotion activities and create favourable conditions for entrepreneurs to meet each other, the entrepreneurs agreed.

 

Probe ordered for foreign investment in forestry and fishery

 

An inter-ministerial mission will examine the granting of foreign investment licences for forestry and aqua culture projects throughout Vietnam and report its findings to Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung.

 

Dung has instructed provincial People’s Committees not to issue new investment licences or sign land rent contracts with foreign investors before the mission has completed its task.

 

The Planning and Investment Ministry will have responsibility for the inquiry with the support of the Agriculture and Rural Development and Natural Resources and Environment ministries and other relevant agencies.

 

The mission’s brief is to examine, inspect and assess the granting and use of foreign investment licences for forestry and aqua culture.

 

Foreign-invested forestry and aqua culture projects have helped create jobs and increase worker income, the PM said in the Official Letter 405/TTg-KTN.

 

But several aqua cultural projects had failed to meet their approved schedule and, as a result, had their licences revoked, the PM said.

 

Elsewhere, land rented to foreign investors impinged on land local farmers had been given the right to use.

Worse, parts of natural forest or sensitive zones had also been rented. These projects too have had their licences withdrawn.

 

Figures posted on the Government web site show that ten provinces have licensed foreign investors to grow forest on 305,353 ha.

 

But they have so far allotted only 33,824ha- equal to 11.1 percent of the total - to foreign investors and their joint-venture partners.

 

Rented land accounted for 15,664ha while land allotted to joint venture between Vietnamese organisations, households and individuals and foreign investors totalled 18,160ha.


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