Vietnam to relax foreign investor restrictions

The limit on share volume that foreign investors can hold in Vietnamese joint-stock company will be eased by opening new areas of investment, said the Ministry of Planning and Investment this week.
In the near future, share-holder limitation would continue to be controlled in areas such as finance, banking and telecommunications, according to the ministry.

Currently, the government only permits foreign investors to hold a maximum of 30 percent of shares in a domestic joint-stock enterprise.

Hard to find a corner office in HN

Viet Nam News, March 09, 2005

HA NOI — Finding a high-class office for lease is becoming increasingly harder for business owners in the capital due to the full occupancy of most high-rise buildings.

With the increase in demand for office space, high rise owners expect that Ha Noi will run out of office space by June this year.

Ha Noi stock exchange opens

Viet Nam News, March 09, 2005

HA NOI — The Hanoi Securities Trading Center (HASTC), Viet Nam’s second stock exchange, opened yesterday in an event that leaders hope will help Viet Nam’s transition into a market economy.

At the opening ceremony, Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung said the market would be critical to helping the country’s transition and its equitisation of State-owned enterprises (SOEs).

PM to fund trade promotion projects

HA NOI — Prime Minister Phan Van Khai has approved a list of 169 trade promotion projects to receive Government funds this year. The funding will be worth roughly VND600 billion (US$38 million), the Ministry of Trade announced yesterday at a press conference.

"The number of approved projects this year is roughly 20 more than last year because trade promotion is now considered a key factor to helping the country meet its annual export target of $31.5 billion, or 19 per cent more than last year," said Trade Deputy Minister Luong Van Tu.

APEC report praises Vietnam trade liberalization

Vietnam has made significant progress in trade and investment liberalization, the Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation, or APEC, said in a report at an Asian-Pacific states meeting Mar. 9.
Hanoi has taken effective steps forward in carrying out tax reforms and removing trade barriers and its controlling administrative system, said the report, which gave APEC assessment over Vietnam’s annual Individual Action Plan (IAP).

Vietnam continues WTO talks with U.S., Japan

This month, Vietnam will continue its talks with the U.S. and Japan on entering the World Trade Organization (WTO) in a bid to become a WTO member by its target date of late 2005.
Vietnam and the U.S. will proceed with negotiations about the former’s WTO entry efforts in Washington D.C. March 14 to 16, according to Vietnam Ministry of Trade.

High on the agenda will likely be Vietnam’s taxation system and its opening up of markets in the telecommunications, banking and financial service sectors. The U.S. had demanded Vietnam clarify some issues by the end of February.

Financial Times: Vietnam More Than a Tourism Alternative

After the tsunamis wreaked havoc on beach resorts in the region, Vietnam’s Victoria Phan Thiet resort received urgent calls from European tour operators looking for alternative destinations.

Gilles Poggi, general manager of the Victoria, who had lost a close former colleague when the giant waves hit Thailand, was taken aback. "Everyone was shocked at this terrible tragedy," he said. "But the show must go on. These were travel industry professionals. People had their trips cancelled and had to be offered an alternative."

Tommy Tang: "Pho

Renowned US personality and Chef Tommy Tang came to Vietnam to shoot part of his hit TV series Let’s Get Cooking with Tommy Tang. Thanh Nien interviewed him to get his side of the story.

Hi! You must be exhausted after a long journey.

Exhausted? Never! (laugh) Since I came to Vietnam, I did not have one day off. I hope that I can relax in Ho Chi Minh City.

What did you do during your trip to the North Vietnam?

Tourism Industry Targets 3.2 Million Foreign Visitors in 2005

In 2005, national tourism industry sets the target of receiving 3.2 million foreign tourists and 15 million domestic tourists and with the revenue of VND 30 trillion. To this end, tourism industry has get prepared for all tourist activities on the basis of the past achievements.

Dollar-Friendly Destinations: Vietnam

BusinessWeek, FEBRUARY 28, 2005