Khởi nghiệp tỉnh Bà Rịa – Vũng Tàu‎Chung kết Cuộc thi Khởi nghiệp ĐMST tỉnh BR-VT năm 2017

Khởi nghiệp tỉnh Bà Rịa – Vũng Tàu‎Chung kết Cuộc thi Khởi nghiệp ĐMST tỉnh BR-VT năm 2017

19 dự án khởi nghiệp sẽ cùng nhau tranh tài tại Vòng chung kết Cuộc thi Khởi nghiệp đổi mới sáng tạo tỉnh Bà Rịa – Vũng Tàu năm 2017 diễn ra vào ngày 05/01/2018.

Chương trình cũng đặc biệt chứng kiến sự ra mắt của Mạng lưới Nhà đầu tư và Cộng đồng cố vấn tỉnh Bà Rịa – Vũng Tàu.

🌐 ICM hân hạnh là đơn vị đồng hành cùng chương trình tìm kiếm những dự án xuất sắc nhất. 
Anh Nguyễn Việt Đức, TGĐ Công ty Cổ phần Quản lý Đầu tư Khởi nghiệp Sáng tạo Việt Nam (ICM), thành viên Hội đồng Giám khảo.

🗓Thời gian: 7:30-12:00 ngày 05/01/2018 (thứ 6)
Địa điểm: Hội trường lầu 4, Khách sạn Malibu, số 263 Lê Hồng Phong, Tp. Vũng Tàu.

 

Half of Vietnamese get news from social media, survey finds

When social or digital foreign media break stories first, they’ve already won Vietnamese public’s recognition, a propaganda official said.

Vietnamese people love social media, their regular source of daily news, a new survey has found.

Vietnam comes fourth in a survey conducted by Pew Research Center to find out how often people in 38 countries, including both advanced and developing ones, turn to social media to get the news.

While getting news online daily is more common in advanced economies (median of 54 percent) than in emerging and developing ones (median of 23 percent), the difference subsides when only news from social media is taken into account, according to the survey.

“People in advanced economies (median of 36 percent) use social media daily for news at similar rates to those in emerging or developing economies (33 percent),” the Pew Research Center said in a report.

South Korea takes the throne with 57 percent of respondents saying they used social media to get the news several times a day or once a day, followed by Lebanon with 52 percent, Argentina with 51 percent and Vietnam with 48 percent, according to the survey released on Thursday by the nonpartisan American think tank.

In 37 of the 38 countries studied, adults aged 18 to 29 were more likely than those 50 and older to use social media at least once a day for news.

In 10 countries, the gap is at least 50 percentage points, with the biggest difference recorded in Vietnam, at 78 points.

Specifically, as many as 81 percent of Vietnamese respondents aged 18-29 use social media daily to access news, while only 3 percent of those aged 50 and older do so, said the survey which interviewed an average of 1,000 persons in each studied country last year.

Higher income people are also more likely to use social media for daily news than lower income people in 32 surveyed countries, with the biggest gap recorded in Vietnam at 32 percentage points. More than half, or 62 percent, of high income earners in Vietnam get their daily news updates from social networking sites while only 34 percent of low income earners do so.

“Nowadays, it is the early-bird newspaper, not the major one, that will triumph,” Vo Van Thuong, the head of the Communist Party’s propaganda organ, said at a meeting in August last year. When social or digital foreign media break stories first, they’ve already won public recognition, leaving Vietnam’s mainstream media well behind, he added.

Vietnam has around 64 million Facebook users, accounting for 3 percent of global Facebookers, according to a report released in July last year by We Are Social, a social media marketing and advertising agency.

The country surpassed Thailand and Turkey from the previous report released in January last year to secure the seventh spot. In just six months, the number of Vietnamese active users had increased by 40 percent.

More than half of the Vietnamese population of nearly 92 million are online, and people spend more than two hours each day on average on the social media network, said the report.

South Korean economy grows 3.1 pct in 2017

The fourth largest economy in Asia grew at its fastest pace in three years last year.

South Korea’s economy grew at its fastest pace in three years in 2017, the central bank said Thursday, thanks to robust exports of tech products including semiconductors and growing consumer spending.

The world’s 11th-largest economy and fourth-largest in Asia expanded 3.1 percent last year, up from 2.8 percent in 2016 and the fastest since 2014’s 3.3 percent, the Bank of Korea said.

“Consumer spending showed moderate improvement while investments in construction and corporate infrastructure also rose significantly,” it said in a statement.

Production in the country’s manufacturing sector expanded by 4.2 percent last year – the highest since 2011 when it grew 6.5 percent.

Investment in corporate infrastructure jumped 14.6 percent – the fastest since 2010 – as local firms led by Samsung invested heavily to build or expand plants.

In 2016 Samsung Electronics – the world’s largest chipmaker – invested over 40 trillion won ($37.6 billion) on infrastructure, and it is reported to have invested far more last year.

Consumer spending also rose 2.6 percent in 2017 – the fastest pace since 2011.

In the fourth quarter the economy grew 3.0 percent year-on-year, the central bank added.

It earlier predicted that the country’s economy would grow 3.0 percent this year – in line with estimates by the IMF and OECD.

Vietnam imports just six passenger cars in first two weeks of 2018

Dealerships have been unable to meet new import rules implemented following a trade pact that started this year.

Vietnam imported just six cars with less than nine seats in the first 15 days of 2018, down 616.8 times from the same period last year.

In total, the country imported 60 completely built units (CBUs) in the first fortnight of the year, compared to 5,000 units in the same period last year, according to the General Department of Vietnam Customs.

This year’s imported automobiles have been valued at $5.6 million, falling from $116 million last year.

This drop in imports has been blamed on a new decree that was put in place on January 1, which car dealerships say is nigh-on impossible for them to adhere to.

The decree stipulates that traders should only be permitted to import automobiles if they can provide valid vehicle registration certificates issued by authorities from the countries of origin.

Original quality control certificates for each vehicle and letters of authorization regarding recalls of defective vehicles from the manufacturers are also required, along with copies of quality assurance certificates provided by the countries of origin.

Japanese auto manufacturers have decided to suspend exports to Vietnam following the stringent quality regulations.

Toyota has halted all production for export to the Vietnamese market, Nikkei said in a recent report.

The firm manufactures auto components in Vietnam, but imports of CBUs from Thailand, Indonesia and Japan account for around one-fifth of what it sells in the market, said the report.

Fellow Japanese giant Honda had previously planned to consolidate all production of its SUVs in Thailand to take advantage of a new tariff rule that also took effect this year to cut import tariffs for autos built and sold within the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) from 30 percent to zero.

The company has since abandoned that plan, and production of vehicles intended for the Vietnamese market has been suspended since early January.

In a similar move, Mitsubishi Motors has suspended production in Thailand of its Pajero Sports SUV designed for the Vietnamese market, according to Nikkei.

Vietnam orders banks to tighten lending in stock, real estate markets

Lenders should avoid ‘risky areas’ and instead prioritize the manufacturing sector, the State Bank said.

Vietnam’s central bank has ordered lenders to tighten control of investment loans intended for the stock and real estate markets, warning risks of bad debt.

A new statement issued by the State Bank of Vietnam said lenders should avoid focusing on stock and real estate customers and maintain credit growth in these sectors within safe limits.

They have to keep track of their debtors’ finances and the progress of their projects, it said.

“Credit expansion should go hand in hand with strict supervision to ensure loans are used for the purposes they are intended for and do not add to bad debt,” the statement said.

The bank’s warning comes in the wake of a property development crisis in Ho Chi Minh City, where the main contractor American General Construction Inc. halted all operations in the city earlier this month claiming it had only been paid 60 percent of its fee for a high-end apartment project. Concerned parties are still trying to deal with the crisis.

The central bank said lenders should divert their focus from “risky areas” to the manufacturing sector, and give priority to agriculture, exports, supporting industries and high-tech investments.

Nguyen Quoc Hung, a senior official at the bank’s Credit Department, said at a press briefing on Thursday that credit growth in risky areas had been successfully controlled in 2017. The real estate sector reported 8.56 percent in credit growth last year, compared to 12.86 percent in 2016, he said.

Nguyen Thi Hong, the bank’s deputy governor, said it will maintain strict control this year as Vietnam’s economy has become more open and vulnerable to fluctuations on the global market.

Bad debt in Vietnam’s banking sector, mostly incurred due to a slowdown in the country’s real estate market in the early 2010s, had been cut to 2.34 percent by the end of September 2017, down from 2.46 percent at the end of last year, according to the State Bank. The central bank set up an institution to deal with toxic loans, the Vietnam Asset Management Corp., in late 2013.

Credit ratings agency Moody’s in October upgraded its outlook for Vietnam’s banking system from stable to positive for the next 12-18 months, reflecting the country’s strong economic prospects and positive outlooks for most rated banks.

PM wants to transform Vietnam from ‘beautiful girl’ to ‘economic tiger’

The prime minister added that no one should be left behind as he envisions Vietnam as a happy and prosperous country.

Vietnam’s prime minister has called for more efforts to make the fast-growing economy a new Asian tiger, combining macroeconomic growth with social prosperity and environmental conservation.

“We must try to transform Vietnam from a beautiful girl into a new economic tiger in Asia,” Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said at a meeting on Monday, referring to how Vietnam is usually associated with its natural charm.

This process does not mean Vietnam should turn its back on its natural advantages, but instead focus on securing sustainable development, he said.

The development process has to create a balance between the economy, society and the environment.

“We must develop but no one should be left behind. We will not leave anyone to suffer in this country,” he said.

“We have to be a happy country, not just a prosperous country.”

Phuc was speaking at the Vietnam Economic Forum held by the Communist Party’s Commission for Economic Affairs and attended by around 1,500 Vietnamese and foreign economic experts and scholars.

He called on investment agencies to improve the business environment and boost investor confidence and the economy’s competitiveness.

Vietnam’s economy expanded 6.81 percent last year, the highest in a decade, making it one of the fastest growing economies in Asia and the world.

Yet, the rich-poor divide remains wide.

A research paper by Oxfam released in January last year showed that the richest person in Vietnam earned more in one day than the poorest person made in 10 years.

The annual incomes of around 200 super-rich people in Vietnam could lift 3.2 million people out of poverty and basically end poverty nationwide, it said. “Super-rich” people are defined as people with investable assets of at least $30 million, while “poor” people are those who earn up to VND700,000 ($31) a month in rural areas and VND900,000 ($40) in cities.

According to the General Statistics, 8 percent of families in Vietnam were living under the poverty line last year.

The number of people living in hunger in the country dropped by 32 percent from the previous year to 746,100 in 2017, it said.

TPP countries seek to forge ahead even as Canada wavers

Vietnam resists to rules that would improve rights for its workforce but agrees to move forward with CPTPP.

As trade officials gather in Tokyo this week to try and forge ahead with a trade pact that U.S. President Donald Trump abandoned last year, the new 11-member club risks getting bogged down by resistance from Canada.

The member countries of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTTP), also known as TPP 11, reached a basic agreement on the pact in November, during the APEC CEO Summit in Da Nang, Vietnam.

But Canada is holding out to secure protection of its cultural industries, like movies, TV, and music, and has said it will not be rushed into signing a deal that other members hope to conclude by March.

That is casting a shadow over a meeting of trade officials from member countries this week in Tokyo and is raising questions about the economic benefits of a pact that doesn’t bring Canada into the fold.

“The overall economic impact of the CPTPP would be significantly further eroded if Canada, which is a Group of Seven nation, decides to postpone its decision about joining,” said Rajiv Biswas, Asia-Pacific chief economist at IHS Markit.

After Trump pulled the United States out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement last year, Japan took a leading role in pushing for a replacement pact.

Along with Australia and Mexico, Tokyo has lobbied hard for the agreement, which aims to eliminate trading barriers and tariffs on industrial and farm products across the 11-nation bloc whose trade totaled $356 billion in 2016.

“Our strong preference is for all 11 countries to join the first wave, but our focus is on bringing a new TPP agreement into force as soon as possible with those who are ready to move,” Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said in Tokyo last week.

The talks in Tokyo starting Monday are expected to iron out technical differences on rules for the treatment of labor and intellectual property but unlikely to yield a conclusive statement that member countries will quickly sign the pact.

Canada, which would be the second-biggest economy in the bloc after Japan, is also unhappy over the rules of origin for cars.

“Like Vietnam, one of the crucial elements we secured was what is known as a work plan, a mechanism to deal with outstanding issues, which for Canada includes ensuring the deal provides better access and terms for autos and does not affect our unique cultural sensitivities,” Joseph Pickerill, spokesman for Canadian Trade Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne, said in a statement.

Vietnam has emerged as another swing country because of its resistance to rules that would improve rights for its workforce, although Hanoi hasn’t shown resistance to sign the pact.

“Canada has taken a step back to say they cannot sign TPP 11 right away, but there are expectations that if the remaining 10 countries move ahead Canada will eventually come back,” said Junichi Sugawara, senior research officer at Mizuho Research Institute.

Vietnam’s ministry back on track with proposal to raise VAT

Its suggestion to raise the tax came out last year and faced strong opposition.
Vietnam’s Minisitry of Finance is once again looking to raise value added tax (VAT) to 11 percent from 2019 and then to 12 percent by 2020 from the current 10 percent.

In August last year, the ministry proposed raising the tax from 10 to 12 percent, starting from 2019.

This time, the reason for the tax increase is just the same: Vietnam’s public debt is rising while raising VAT is in accordance with international norms, the ministry said in a draft proposal.

The average tax rate in European Union countries was 19 percent in 2000 and 21.5 percent in 2014.

It was 18 percent in 2000, 19 percent in 2014 and 2016 in Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries, the ministry said.

But if the proposal is approved, Vietnam will have the second highest VAT rate in Southeast Asia, only after the Philippines, where goods and services are levied at 18 percent.

VAT rate in Southeast Asian countries

The ministry also pointed out several countries that have the same or lower annual incomes per capita compared to Vietnam but are imposing higher VAT, such as Pakistan with 17 percent, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh 15 percent and Nepal 13 percent.

Last year, the ministry asked to increase a number of different taxes and fees, including the VAT, and its proposed 2-percent VAT hike triggered a heated debate among economists, policymakers and businesses.

The ministry said the raised tax will make up for government revenue losses when Vietnam fulfils its commitment to cut import tariffs under free trade agreements, and help tackle rising public debt, insisting that Vietnam’s VAT is still low.

The World Bank previously forecast that Vietnam’s public debt would climb to 64.4 percent in 2017 and 64.7 percent in 2018.

The final official result showed the debt at VND3,100 trillion ($136.5 billion), a rise of VND300 trillion against last year, or 62.6 percent of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP), down 1 percentage point against 2016 and lower than the target by 2.2 points.

Vietnam’s thirst for beer has global giants eager for a taste of the market

Vietnam is the biggest beer market in Southeast Asia, consuming nearly 4 billion liters last year.

Every evening, large groups of workers and friends gather for lager and snacks at a beer garden along Quang Trung Street in Hanoi.

“Drinking beer is part of our culture,” said Le Tuan Linh, 32, a PR manager at a property business. He and his friends often start the evening with “1-2-3-Zo” before each downing a glass of the amber nectar.

“When we drink beer we can relax, so we often go for a drink after we leave the office,” he said, hoisting a mug of draft beer.

Vietnamese people also have a habit of discussing business over a beer, and the more lager downed, the closer they move to a deal.

Vietnam’s beer-friendly culture stands out compared with other emerging Asian countries like India and Indonesia. In Hanoi, streetside draught beer is as common as coffee.

This market for beer is becoming ever more attractive to global giants that have been racing for stakes in local brewer Habeco and its bigger rival Sabeco, both of which the Vietnamese government plans to privatize.

Recently, Thai Beverage bought a majority stake worth $4.84 billion in Sabeco.

Thai Bev’s local unit, Vietnam Beverage Co Ltd, won the 54 percent Sabeco stake on offer at an auction last month.

The Sabeco deal is expected to help Thai Bev tap into Vietnam’s beer market, worth about $6.48 billion last year, where a young population and booming economy counter the drawbacks of political resistance, a high minimum bid price and a cap on foreign ownership.

The Thai owner of Sabeco plans to increase the brewer’s annual output to 1.9-2 billion liters of beer in 2018 from 1.75 billion liters in 2017, said company execs.

The domestic market share held by Sabeco is also expected to increase to 50 percent from 40 percent on the strength of Thai Beverage’s retail network.

Many international brewers, including Australia’s leading beer company Carlton & United Breweries and Denmark’s Carlsberg, have expressed interest in acquiring shares in Habeco, Vietnam’s third-largest beer company by sales.

Carlsberg has already edged closer to reaching an agreement with the Vietnamese government to increase its stake in Habeco. The brewer, which already owns 17.3 percent of Habeco, has been discussing its priority purchase rights with the Vietnamese government for years.

“Carlsberg, the Vietnamese government and Habeco have reached a common understanding on a number of issues during the negotiations, and we expect this will accelerate the process,” Reuters quoted a Carlsberg spokesman as saying.

The government said last month it expects a stake sale in Habeco to be completed in the first quarter of 2018.