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BUSINESS IN BRIEF 17/6   2009-06-17 - VietNamNet/ND, SGGP, TN

Vietnam agricultural economic exhibition fair 2009 opened

The Vietnam agricultural economic exhibition fair 2009 was opened in Long Khanh town, Dong Nai province on June 16.

The fair welcomes 251 enterprises with 400 pavilions to display machinery, equipment and new products in service of agricultural production, consumption and exports.

Besides, a series of other activities are held such as: seminars, discussion, contests, exchanges and consultation on agricultural technology and science. The stimulus package programme to assist farmers in buying equipment and meterials for agricultural production is also proposed.

The fair was jointly organised by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and the People’s Committee of Dong Nai province. The exhibition-cum-fair will conclude on June 21.

Medicine costs continue to rise

 

Many kinds of foreign and domestic medicines have moved up since the beginning of the year, with June particularly large increases.

A pharmacy in District 1, HCMC. Medicine prices have continued to increase this month (Photo: Lao Dong)
Continuing the price race this month was a rise of ten imported medicines by Zuelling Pharma Vietnam.

Solvay Pharma followed suit, raising prices by eight to nine percent for a series of medicines, including Hidrasec Enfant 300mg, Brexin 20mg, Fatig 10ml, Herbesser and Adona Disgren.

The Singaporean company Abbot Lab also increased the price of eight medicines, including Klacid MR, Klacid 60ml, Klacid 500mg, Sevoran, Forane 250ml, Forane 10ml, Dermal E and Dermal Day.

Fournier Group Vietnam raised the price of some antibiotics and cardiovascular medicines. Klacid MR 60ml – 50ml went up by ten percent, Brexin, Fatig and Herbesser 60 – 30ml by eight percent and Disgren by nine percent.

Sai Gon Giai Phong noted on June 16 that the price of over 20 eyewashes by Alcon had risen by some eight percent.

Other items like Salonpas, produced by Hisamishu, have seen their prices increased twice within three months. In April it rose to VND160,000 a bottle, up from VND104,000, and in June it went up to VND172,000 a bottle.

Foreign medicines rose in price, in part due to foreign currency increases.

The domestic medicine price relies on this to match the price rocketing.

Last weekend, BV Pharma and 1/9 Pharmaceutical announced that the price of some types of medicines would go up.

Specifically, BV Pharma raised the price of weight loss medicine by five percent and 2/9 Company also increased the price of vitamin A, vitamin B6, Cloramphenicol 250mg, Promethazin and Salbumol by ten to 25 percent.

The HCMC Department of Health said that companies had explained the medicine price increases were due to the rocketing price of imported materials.

Some pharmacies said that companies raised the prices of items allowed by the health department, but for items that the department did not approve price increase, companies simply cut promotions.

For example, with every ten bottles of eye wash, buyers would receive another item free. Now companies do not offer such promotions.

The increasing costs have both worried pharmacies and customers, especially the poor.

Vietnam Airlines orders more Airbus aircraft

Vietnam Airlines announced June 16 at the Paris Air Show that it has placed a firm order with Airbus for 16 more single aisle A321s and signed a memorandum of understanding for two additional A350 XWBs, Airbus said.

The latest A321 contract increases the total number of orders placed by Vietnam Airlines for the type to 41, of which 14 have already been delivered.

Airbus said the commitment for the A350 XWBs comes in addition to an existing firm order for 10 aircraft placed in December 2007. Vietnam Airlines has selected the A350-900 variant of the all-new midsize wide body.

A computer-made photo of Airbus A350 XWB ordered by Vietnam Airlines (Photo: Courtesy of Airbus)

“Our new order for the A321 reflects the success we have achieved with the aircraft on both our regional and domestic route networks,” Pham Ngoc Minh, President and Chief Executive Officer of Vietnam Airlines, was quoted by Airbus.

“In the wide body category, we firmly believe that the A350 XWB will set new standards of efficiency and passenger comfort, making it the right choice to develop our intercontinental route network.”

Airbus President and CEO Tom Enders said in the June 16 statement, “Vietnam will remain one of the key growth markets in Asia in coming years.”

The A321 is the largest member of the Airbus A320 family. It typically seats 185 passengers in a two-class layout and has a non-stop flying range of 3,000 nautical miles or 5,550 kilometres.

The A350 XWB is Airbus’ new medium-capacity long-range wide body product. Capable of flying up to 15,400 km, it has the widest fuselage in its category and offers the lowest operating costs and lowest seat mile cost of any aircraft in this market segment.

Vietnam Airlines currently operates a fleet of 52 aircraft and flies to 19 domestic and 23 international destinations. The national flag carrier is investing heavily in its fleet.

Earlier this year, CEO Minh said his carrier was striving to improve its service quality to become Southeast Asia’s second biggest airline after Singapore Airlines in 2015.

Laos seeks agricultural advice from HCM City

Laos ’ Deputy Prime Minister and several government officials arrived in Ho Chi Minh City on June 16 on the start of a 4-day visit to seek out specific models of cooperation in agriculture and also to learn how to develop the country’s agricultural products and the food processing industry.

At a meeting with HCM City ’s Mayor Le Hoang Quan the same day, Deputy Prime Minister Somsavat Lengsavad thanked the municipal authorities for the practical assistance they have given to Laos over the years.

“ HCM City leads Vietnam in its support to Laos , especially Vientiane , in training and developing its human resources,” the Laos Deputy PM noted.

Currently, 235 students from Laos are studying in different universities in Ho Chi Minh City with scholarships provided by the Vietnamese Government.

Mayor Quan asked the Saigon Trading Corporation and the Saigon Agricultural Corporation to carry out specific joint projects with their Lao partners in the production and processing of foodstuffs, distribution networks and in animal husbandry.

He also requested companies to focus on discussing with their Lao counterparts the possibilities of investing in both Vietnam and Laos in addition to sharing their information and experiences.

Quan also believes that HCM City and Vientiane should carry out top level agreements reached by both governments to develop bilateral comprehensive cooperation.

He shared with his Lao guests the city authorities’ experiences and policies to help farmers, agricultural businesses and other industries to overcome their current difficulties, build up modern production and processing lines and establish distribution networks to stabilise food prices.

During their four-day stay in HCM City , the Lao Deputy PM and representatives of 16 Lao businesses will visit several farms and food processing plants, as well as breeding farms and a hi-tech agricultural zone.

Many HCM City businesses and their Lao counterparts have already worked together in rubber and timber processing projects under previously signed agricultural agreements.

Traditional crafts hit by global recession 
 
The global economic slump has badly affected the traditional craft industry which employs 12 million people in Vietnam, a meeting during the Hue Traditional Craft Festival heard Sunday. 
 
Many trade villages are short of capital and raw materials; and the export markets have shrunk, said participants at the meeting in Hue Town in the central province of Thua Thien-Hue.
 
Nine trade villages, more than 2,150 households and two enterprises around the country had gone bankrupt between January and March this year, according to the latest statistics by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
 
Over 120 trade villages and nearly 500 craft enterprises weren’t profitable, while 80 percent of the businesses couldn’t afford new technology.


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