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BUSINESS IN BRIEF 21/9   2008-09-21 - VNA, TT, ND, SGGP, VNS

Foreign investors interested in Hai Duong

Some 20 foreign investors, who attended the second Vietnam Economic Forum, made a fact-finding tour of northern Hai Duong province on Sept. 20.

Showing their interest in the investment climate of the province that is located 50 km from Hanoi capital city, the investors scrutinise its potentials for energy and power development, and information technology.

They also looked into the workers’ skills, vocational training programmes, and the land acreage at the local industrial zones.

The provincial Party Committee’s Secretary Bui Thanh Quyen said the province will create favourable conditions to attracts investors, particularly in hi-tech projects.

He said Hai Duong, a province of the northern key economic zone that has an acreage of 1,700 and a population of 1.7 million, is potential in industries.

According to Quyen, the province now has 10 industrial zones and 33 industrial clusters, with 187 foreign invested projects capitalised at 2.2 billion USD from 21 countries and territories.

The same day, the delegation visited the Dai An Industrial Zone which was built with an investment capital of 1.3 trillion VND, and the Chi Linh Golf-course.

Foreign organisations support reform

The Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) has signed an agreement on technical support for reforming business registration with the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) and the Royal Norwegian Embassy, the ministry said.

The project will have two stages with a total budget of 8.9 million USD, including 1 million USD from UNIDO and 4.2 million USD from the Norwegian government for the first stage. The budget for the second stage will be allocated after completing the first stage.

Atlantic potato farmers earn impressive profits

A PepsiCo-funded potato pilot project is proving to be a big success.

Growing Atlantic potato strains at the test site has yielded 25-30 tonnes of potatoes per ha rather than 8 tonnes with local strains.

Farmers can now earn as much 50 million VND of profit per ha, said Dr Pham Xuan Tung of the Da Lat Centre for Potato Research at a seminar this week.

“It will be very good for the province to cultivate the potatoes widely,” Tung said, adding that PepsiCo has pledged further long-term funding for farmers to grow Atlantic potatoes to supply as raw materials for snack processing plants in Binh Duong and also for exports.

ACB offers 300 million USD for local businesses

The Asian Commercial Bank has offered 5 trillion VND (over 300 million USD) for lending in order to assist local enterprises, household businesses and individuals to expand their production, the bank announced on Sept. 20.

The money, the first batch from the total 15 trillion VND the bank planned until the end of this year, aims to serve the businesses’ purposes of increasing exports, importing materials for production, and expanding production.

Of the figure, ACB sets aside 3 trillion VND to provide local exporters with credits worth up to 90 percent of the value of their contracts, and importers with mortgage loans worth up to 80 percent of the value of their import contracts.

The remaining 2 trillion VND will be provided to private businesses, household businesses and individuals.

PetroVietnam Finance makes record turnover

PetroVietnam Finance notched up a turnover of VND2.45 trillion (US$146.88 million) in the first eight months of this year, representing an increase of 150 per cent on the same period last year.

The corporation also posted a pre-tax profit of VND352 billion, after spending VND946.4 billion to set up a provisional fund for financial investment. The financial institution targets to earn an additional profit of VND1 billion for the remaining four months of the year, while also carrying out a share listing in early October.

Bien Viet Securities tries to better serve foreigners

Bien Viet Securities has introduced a new index system to better serve foreign investors trading securities at local stock exchanges.

The system, called the CBV International Index, includes the shares with the largest market capitalisation and highest liquidity. The brokerage also adjusted criteria for previous indices systems in the CBV-Index or CBV-Midcap.

Sowatco to offer 12m shares

The Southern Waterborne Transport Corporation (Sowatco) will offer an initial 12 million shares to the public at the Ha Noi Securities Trading Centre. The shares have an initial value of VND10,200 each.

Sowatco has a charter capital of VND671 billion ($40.48 million).The corporation, which comes under the Ministry of Transport, specialises in water transport, construction, import and export, design consulting and property trading.

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