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BUSINESS IN BRIEF 8/3   2010-03-08 - VietNamNet/VNA

Eximbank joins GlobePass alliance


The Vietnam Export-Import Commercial Joint Stock Bank (Vietnam Eximbank) has officially joined GlobePass, an alliance network of financial institutions in the Asia-Pacific region, to raise its prestige and the quality of service for both domestic and foreign customers.


Eximbank made the announcement in Ho Chi Minh City on March 8, saying it was the first bank in Vietnam to join such a network.


GlobePass membership will allow Eximbank to offer customers high-grade financial services and more utilities and help the government achieve the goal of phasing out payments in cash. The bank is now able to provide discount programmes for Vietnamese institutions that accept credit cards.


GlobalPass credit-card holders will enjoy privileges such as discounts, coupons, and gifts at the alliance network’s 277 merchants in 11 countries and territories in the Asia-Pacific region, including Japan, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, the Philippines, Thailand,  Indonesia and Vietnam.


GlobePass, which now has over 100 million cardholders with cards issued from 12 member banks in the above-said countries and territories, aims to boost cooperation among global financial institutions.


Eximbank has 34 merchants that have offered 42 coupons.


First int’l sugar, paper expo opens in Hanoi


Vietnam’s first international sugar and paper exhibition opened in Hanoi on March 8.


The Vietnam Sugar and Paper Expo 2010 expects to offer chances for Vietnamese and foreign enterprises, especially those from India , to enhance cooperation in investment, production and the provision of material for sugar and paper industries.


Apart from displaying equipment and technology at the three-day expo, jointly held by India’s Nexgen Exhibitions Pvt Ltd, Agricultural Trade Promotion Centre and EIFEC Co. Ltd., participants will also have chance to do research on the possibility of building sugar and paper factories in Vietnam.


According to forecast, by 2020, Vietnam will produce enough sugar not only for domestic consumption but also for export.


Two Indian enterprises have so far invested in building sugar refineries in Vietnam.


Vietnam now has 30 paper mills with their products meeting 37 percent of domestic demand. The country has approved a development plan for increasing output for the paper sector through 2020.


Phu Quoc set to become tourism and commercial hub


Phu Quoc Island in the southern province of Kien Giang will be turned into a tourism and commercial hub for the country and the region, according to a decision recently signed by Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung.


According to the decision, Vietnamese individuals and organisations, Overseas Vietnamese and foreign investors are encouraged to invest in the island. Fields of investment range from infrastructure, industry, urban development, and seaports, to trade, tourism, finance, and banking.


In particular, foreign investors will be allowed to provide international telecom services for the island.


The decision is expected to boost the development of Phu Quoc in the near future.


With over 56,000 sq. km in area, Phu Quoc is known as a place rich in potential in seafood production and tourism.


Bunka-Vietnam opens new shutter, door factory


Bunka-Vietnam Co Ltd inaugurated a new shutter and door factory, with a total investment of 6 billion JPY (64 million USD) at Thang Long II Industrial Park the northern province of Hung Yen last week.


The factory will provide products to the Vietnamese market with an expected capacity of 100 shutters and 500 doors per month.


The factory is expected to come online on April 1.


Nestle Vietnam reduces milk product prices


Nestle Vietnam has bucked the trend of rising prices for powdered milk by lowering the prices of a number of its products.


A 900mg can of Lactogen, for instance, was reduced from 131,000 VND to 125,000 VND.


The move was part of Nestle’s effort to fulfil a vow it made last year of making a long-term reduction in milk prices, beginning with cuts back in May and July of last year, the company said.


Vietnam attends trade union meeting in Singapore


Permanent Vice President of the Vietnam General Confederation of Labour (VGCL) Nguyen Hoa Binh led a delegation to attend a consultation meeting in Singapore on March 4.


The meeting between the International Trade Union Regional Organisation for Asia-Pacific (ITUC-AP) and the Lao Federation of Trade Unions (LFTU) Central Committee was also attended by ITUC-AP General Secretary Noriyuki Suzuki and the Vice President of the LFTU Central Committee.


The participants exchanged information on their organisations’ trade union activities and discussed measures to further strengthen cooperation between the three organisations in the time to come.


Established in September 2007, ITUC-AP is a regional trade union organisation with more than 19 million trade unionists. Despite not being ITUC-AP members, the VGCL and LFTU still maintain a partnership and cooperation with the organisation in various trade union fields.


On the occasion, VGCL Vice President Binh had working sessions with the President of the Singapore National Trade Union Congress and the General Secretary of the Union Network International – Asia-Pacific Regional Organisation (UNI-APRO).

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