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Sun. AM-PM KTFA Iraq and Vietnam News Articles 1-15-23

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KTFA

Henig » January 15th, 2023

The PM directs the Ministry of Electricity to contract with sober international companies.

Baghdad / NINA / – The Prime Minister, Muhammad Al-Sudani, instructed the Ministry of Electricity to contract with international companies.

A ministry statement quoted Electricity Minister Ziyad Ali Fadel as saying: The Prime Minister directed that the contracts of the Ministry of Electricity be with reputable international companies.

He added: Our ministry is preparing for this transformation and developing strategic plans to implement it.

He continued: The ministry will witness the signing of major international companies in the field of electricity.

The minister had signed an agreement with the German company Siemens on the sidelines of the Prime Minister’s visit to Germany.   LINK

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Iraq is studying the application of the “TIR” system.. What are its economic gains? 

Economy News – Baghdad

The National Committee to Facilitate the Movement of Transport and Trade in the ESCWA Region of the Ministry of Transport discussed with the General Company for Land Transport the procedures for applying the international (TIR) system, the movement of trade between exporting and importing countries on the territory of Iraq, while clarifying its advantages and economic gains.

Committee member Abdul Hassan Al-Ziyadi said in a statement to the official news agency, “We met with the assistant general manager of the company to answer all inquiries and review the latest procedures related to the application of the transit and international guarantee system (TIR) in the entry of trucks for goods, which we are studying to implement in Iraq.”

He explained, “The TIR system contributes to reducing the transportation time by up to 80%, in addition to reducing costs by up to 38%, and the system is currently applied in many countries, and allows goods to be shipped from the country of origin, through transit countries to the destination country in Customs-sealed transport compartments that are tracked through a multilateral system that is recognized between the countries implementing the TIR mutually.

It is the easiest, safest and most reliable way to move goods across multiple international borders, which saves time and money for transport operators and customs authorities, in addition to being the key to faster border crossings for truck drivers, which means lower costs for transport companies and customs authorities,” he noted. 

And Al-Ziyadi stated, “The TIR also contributes directly to the implementation of the main objectives of the Trade Facilitation Agreement of the World Trade Organization (TFA), such as measures aimed at enhancing transparency, goods clearance, freedom of transit, customs cooperation, and the dissemination and availability of information.”  LINK

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Source: Dinar Recaps


Vietnam News

Henig » January 15th, 2023

VIB’s new card gives big push to online shopping

January, 14/2023 – 10:12

LazCard is expected to provide customers with a convenient shopping experience from opening cards to paying quickly, safely and seamlessly

HÀ NỘI — With the privilege of up to 50 per cent cashback on the Lazada Vietnam e-commerce platform and technologies first deployed by VIB, the LazCard credit card is expected to bring a great shopping experience to users during the year-end shopping season.

Innovative and pioneering card trend in VN

Việt Nam is an extremely promising market for the retail banking industry thanks to the characteristics of population growth, GDP per capita and fast economic development. Grasping that trend, many banks have been promoting retail lending activities to diversify credit portfolios and optimise profits.

VIB is one of the banks which has seen its outstanding retail loan accounting for over 90 per cent of the total loan portfolio – the highest level in the banking industry and the highest growth rate of the retail segment in the market.

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This impressive figure is attributable to the bank’s hard work in developing products with high technology content and automation. That has helped customers save time and make financial transactions safely and securely anytime, anywhere.

In particular, VIB has led the card trend thanks to the debuts of unique credit card lines that have brought outstanding benefits for all customers’ spending, leading modern card technologies in Việt Nam and the region besides impressive and creative marketing activities. As a result, VIB has been continuously ranked at the top in terms of the growth in the number of credit cards and average spending on cards.

VIB’s statistics showed that the bank has to date issued about 1.6 million cards, including credit and debit cards. Currently, VIB accounts for more than 35 per cent of Mastercard’s total spending in Việt Nam. VIB also leads in the growth rate of Mastercard credit cards, five or six times the average of the whole market in quantity and quality. 

VIB is also the bank that experiences the highest Mastercard spending revenue overseas with a growth rate of nearly 200 per cent per year.

VIB joined the local credit card market in 2019. The bank now ranks eighth among banks in Việt Nam in terms of the number of issued cards. It also places 4th in total card spending, according to data released by the Vietnam Card Association in June 2022. Total spending via VIB credit cards has increased 8.6 times, from VNĐ8.4 trillion (US$360 million) in 2018, to VNĐ72 trillion (over $3 billion) in 2022.

Thanks to VIB’s achievements, the International Finance Magazine recently granted the bank two awards – “The Best New Card Offering – VIB Family Link” and “Most Innovative New Credit Card Service – Vietnam 2022”. The two awards have recognised the endless effort of VIB in innovating and pioneering in terms of card trends in Việt Nam. This is the second consecutive year the bank has received this recognition from international media.

Strong push for cashless payment, online shopping

Following these achievements, VIB has debuted LazCard on the Lazada Vietnam e-commerce platform with technologies first deployed by VIB in Việt Nam. LazCard is expected to provide customers with a convenient shopping experience from opening cards to paying quickly, safely and seamlessly. This is a co-branded credit card that VIB has launched in cooperation with global payment technology company Visa and e-commerce platform Lazada.

With up to 50 per cent cashback for online shopping, LazCard is now the leading Ecom card line. This rate includes 20 per cent points accumulation for cashback on spending and 30 per cent from online shopping vouchers via Lazada every Friday and special days exclusively for LazCard cardholders.

With a 30 per cent discount on shopping vouchers, LazCard cardholders using vouchers will receive an immediate discount of VNĐ150,000 for orders worth VNĐ450,000 or more every Friday, and VNĐ1 million for orders worth from VNĐ3 million on special days such as Lazada’s birthday.

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Once customers successfully open a LazCard, their card information and their spending from VNĐ1 million on Lazada within 30 days from the date of card issuance are saved, they will immediately receive a Lazada e-voucher of VNĐ500,000.

VIB also said that it will offer Lazada e-voucher valued at VNĐ100,000 on customers’ birthdays. Free shipping e-vouchers will be provided for LazCard cardholders by the bank every month. LazCard cardholders also enjoy a series of attractive offers from VIB partners nationwide.

“As an office worker, I often shop for essentials on e-commerce platforms which a lot of sellers participated in. Thus it is easy for me to compare prices, consult previous buyers’ reviews to come to a decision whether to buy or not,” Hồng who is living in Hà Nội’s Thanh Xuân District, said. 

“With a 50 per cent cashback of LazCard on Lazada, I not only enjoy the promotions of suppliers and trading floors, but also benefit greatly from the bank, especially on occasions like Tết holiday when I will shop a lot,” she said. 

According to the “Consumer trends during Tết holiday in 2022″ report released by market research company Kantar, the shopping behaviour of Vietnamese consumers during the Tết holiday saw many changes. Local customers were more familiar with small supermarkets and online shopping to avoid crowds.

Along with attractive incentives, the launch of the new LazCard card line promises to bring a smooth and convenient shopping experience to customers during the year-end shopping period. It is also expected to give a big hit to cashless payments and online shopping in the near future. 

— VNS   LINK

FTAs (Free Trade Agreements) a silver lining for economic growth

January, 15/2023

The country’s trade surpassed the milestone of $700 billion in value to hit $73.5 billion in 2022, a rise of 9.5 per cent against the same period of the previous year, according to the updates of the General Statistics Office.

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New-generation free trade agreements (FTAs) continue to be a silver lining in Việt Nam’s trade growth targeting US$1 trillion in import-export revenue by 2025.

The country’s trade surpassed the milestone of $700 billion in value to hit $73.5 billion in 2022, a rise of 9.5 per cent against the same period of the previous year, according to the updates of the General Statistics Office. Of the figure, exports rose by 10.6 per cent, while imports by 8.4 per cent.

With a trade surplus of nearly $11 billion this year, Việt Nam registered a trade surplus for seven years in a row which contributed significantly to the balance of payments, improving foreign exchange reserves, stabilising exchange rates and other macroeconomic indicators, Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Trần Quốc Khánh said.

Thirty-nine products joined the club of over a billion US dollars in export revenue, nine of which had export value from $10 billion.

Although Việt Nam is an economy with high openness (the ratio of goods imported and exported to GDP was 200 per cent) and easily affected by external factors, trade with impressive results became a highlight of the economy in the context of growing global uncertainties, including the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Russia-Ukraine conflict and rising inflation worldwide.

According to Trần Thanh Hải, deputy director of the ministry’s Import-Export Department, to achieve high export turnover and added value, it was necessary to mention the efforts of enterprises in exploiting traditional markets and searching and expanding into new markets.

The implementation of new-generation FTAs such as the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), EU-Việt Nam FTA (EVFTA) and UK-Việt Nam FTA (UKVFTA), and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership also helped promote exports to these markets with an average growth rate of around 20 per cent, Hải said.

By the end of 2022, 15 FTAs with Việt Nam were in effect, and two others under negotiation.

Hải said that implementing FTAs, especially new-generation FTAs, contributed significantly to promoting exports, especially to markets where we had never had an FTA like Canada, Peru and Mexico.

The growth in trade in 2022 also came from the effort to stabilise and resume production and business from the fourth quarter of 2021 after the pandemic, which created a great motivation for the production of goods and trade activities. He said that the effort to facilitate trade and accelerate administrative reforms also played an important role in trade growth.

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According to the General Department of Customs, during the past three decades, the Vietnamese economy witnessed a strong transformation process. It gradually implemented multilateral and diversified foreign policies, taking advantage of trade and investment cooperation, integration and technology transfer to promote economic development.

The year 1995 was marked by a series of memorable events, which set the stage for Việt Nam’s process of opening up and integrating into the global economy, including the accession to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the ASEAN Free Trade Area, the application to join the World Trade Organisation and the normalisation of Việt Nam-US relations.

The customs authority said that Việt Nam’s imports and exports saw strong growth and constantly set new records.

Việt Nam reached the milestone of $100 billion in trade for the first time in 2007 and $200 billion after just four years. The milestone of $300 billion was hit in 2015, $400 billion in 2017, $500 billion in 2019, and $600 billion in 2021.

The customs authority said that Việt Nam was continuously in the top 30 countries and territories with the largest import-export value globally in the ranking of the WTO. Notably, while the rankings of ASEAN countries did not see significant improvements in recent years, Việt Nam saw remarkable growth.

In 2021, Việt Nam ranked 23rd in export value and 20th in import value worldwide.

Bright prospects

Despite two-digit growth in 2022, exports were anticipated to face several difficulties and challenges, both from within the economy and external influences.

To achieve the goal of export growth at 6 per cent this year, coupled with maintaining a trade surplus, more support must be given to enterprises, especially in capital access and market expansion.

The first challenge was the decline in orders when many cut, postponed or cancelled. Many enterprises could not sign new ones due to the rising inflationary pressure from many countries, including Việt Nam’s major trade partners.

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Hoàng Hồng Thuỷ from the Chiến Thắng Garment Joint Stock Company said that orders were around 30 per cent lower due to the impact of global issues, including the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

The second challenge was the financial pressure on export enterprises, with most facing capital shortages, difficulty accessing capital due to high-interest rates, fluctuating foreign exchange rates, and rising input material prices after more than two years of struggling with the pandemic.

In addition, the requirements for the quality of goods were increasingly demanding. It was a must to improve the product quality to take advantage of tariff preferences provided by new-generation FTAs, such as EVFTA and CPTPP.

According to Nguyễn Cẩm Trang, deputy director of the Import–Export Department, the story was not only about origins but also about how to meet requirements on food hygiene and safety as well as labour standards.

Another problem was that FDI companies were dominant in the export revenue of Việt Nam. In 2022, the exports of FDI companies accounted for 74 per cent of the country’s total export revenue.

Đậu Anh Tuấn, deputy general secretary of the Việt Nam Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said that the growth of domestic private enterprises was lower than that of FDI enterprises. This highlighted several points.

The first was that the domestic private sector was not as good as FDI enterprises in taking the advantages of FTAs Việt Nam signed. The second was domestic enterprises were slower than FDI in moving up the supply chain ladder.

Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyễn Hồng Diên said that while the manufacturing and processing industry accounted for 89 per cent of exports in 2022, the participation of domestic enterprises remained modest.

Participation of domestic enterprises in the global supply chains was also limited, and the country’s export was still heavily dependent on the FDI sector, Diên added.

Nguyễn Thị Thu Trang, director of VCCI’s WTO and Integration Centre, said FTAs would continue to be a silver lining for enterprises to create competitive advantage and maintain and expand market shares.

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To maintain growth engines for export, Trang said that Việt Nam should strengthen the negotiation of new FTAs (bilateral, multilateral and regional) and, at the same time, have an annual programme to evaluate the efficiency of the implementation of FTAs, thereby identifying and promptly handling issues that affected the use of such trade agreements

Nguyễn Thị Hương, GSO’s general director, said that Việt Nam needed to promote exports while strengthening the management of imports appropriately, ensure a sustainable trade balance and increase official exports in association with restructuring industries and building brands.

Diên said the ministry would review and advise authorities to negotiate and sign new bilateral and multilateral trade agreements.

In addition, measures would be raised to efficiently take advantage of existing FTAs to promote trade while priority would be given to developing e-commerce and building domestic and foreign supply chains.

Support would be provided to localities and enterprises to shift to official exports, build product brands and remove technical barriers so that enterprises could penetrate new markets.

Stressing the important role of FTAs in diversifying markets and promoting trade growth, Diên said the ministry would advise the Government to build a new strategy on international economic integration in the context that the global economy was forecast to struggle in 2023.

It was essential to take advantage of FTAs to develop fundamental and breakthrough industries, Diên said. Analysis and forecasts must also be enhanced to keep up with global and regional market developments.

He said that trade remedies would also be enhanced to protect the legitimate interests of domestic enterprises and maintain a fair, competitive environment in international trade.

He also urged enterprises to pay attention to renovating technologies to enhance competitiveness, improve product quality and build brands while speeding up digitalisation, greening production and transforming business models based on the application of digital technology and promoting cross-border trade via e-commerce.

Trang said that with timely and substantive support and every enterprise’s effort, the country could be confident and have motivation for further development in 2023 and beyond.

— VNS   LINK

Hanoi facilitates specialty product development

06:00 | 15/01/2023

(VEN) – Nguyen The Hiep, Deputy Director of the Hanoi Department of Industry and Trade, said 426 Hanoi-based enterprises, cooperatives and production households have so far created 1,649 certified OCOP (One Commune One Product) products of high quality and reasonable price, 65 percent of which are food products.  

Hanoi has opened more than 60 points of sale of OCOP products in 26 districts and towns to introduce and sell not only certified OCOP products of Hanoi but also certified goods from 25 other provinces and cities, including fresh fruits and vegetables, and foodstuffs.

At the launch ceremony of the OCOP product point of sale in the capital’s urban district of Ba Dinh, Co Nhu Dung, Vice Chair of the district people’s committee, said Ba Dinh has acknowledged the OCOP program’s importance, and the district works with the city’s authorities to develop, promote and sell OCOP products.

In 2021 and 2022, the district people’s committee launched seven points of sale of almost 70 OCOP products by 19 enterprises, cooperatives and household businesses.

Hanoi will help producers diversify products, and strictly manage and further improve the quality and strengthen trade promotion of OCOP products.

One Commune One Product (OCOP) is a national program designed to promote the development of regional agricultural specialties and rural tourism.

Lan Phuong    LINK

Weak finance-backed companies possess large land funds

January, 14/2023 – 10:57

There are now many enterprises on UPCOM with small charter capital but a great amount of land funds.

HÀ NỘI — There are now many enterprises on UPCOM with small charter capital but a great amount of land funds.

With low business performance and low stock market price, the businesses can become the targets of other big companies.

With a charter capital of only VNĐ145 billion (US$6.18 million), Hà Nội Food Joint Stock Company (HAF) holds many real estate assets located in the capital’s central areas, including 11 commercial centres, supermarkets and convenience stores; as well as eight hotels, restaurants, and food service establishments.

Some prominent land areas include 736sq.m at 51 Lê Đại Hành Street; 164.5sq.m at 46 Lương Ngọc Quyến; 347.6sq.m at 7 Đinh Liệt; and 200sq.m at 30 Hàng Đào.

HAF also has other real estate facilities owned by two subsidiaries – Bắc Qua Trading and Service Joint Stock Company – in which HAF holds 54 per cent of the capital, and Lãng Yên Trading Joint Stock Company in which HAF holds 51 per cent of capital.

A project of Bắc Qua Joint Stock Company is located on an area of 2,296sq.m at the intersection of Hàng Khoai – Nguyễn Thiện Thuật and the project of Lãng Yên Company is located at 21 Trần Khánh Dư.

Despite owning many desirable pieces of land in the capital, HAF’s business activities are inefficient. In the 2016-19 period, the profit of the business declined from VNĐ11.4 billion to VNĐ3.1 billion. Since 2020, HAF has suffered continuous losses.

The financial report of the third quarter of 2022 shows that, in the first nine months of the year, the company’s revenue from sales and service provision reached VNĐ81.29 billion, down 27 per cent compared to the same period in 2021; and after-tax loss was VNĐ6.3 billion, a sharp increase compared to the loss of VNĐ3.5 billion in the same period in 2021.

HAF operates in retail, wholesale and management and operation of a network of locations. The COVID-19 pandemic has severely damaged the wholesale business and exploitation of the network of locations for rental. Some clients closed, returned premises, and liquidated contracts ahead of due time. Accordingly, the company’s commercial revenue went down and losses increased in 2022.

CHS: Business goes down after equitisation

Hồ Chí Minh City Public Lighting Joint Stock Company (SAPULICO or CHS), has a charter capital of VNĐ284 billion, of which Hồ Chí Minh City State Financial Investment Company (HFIC) holds 51 per cent, and Long Hậu Joint Stock Company holds 34 per cent.

Sapulico was equitised in 2015, operating in the field of management and maintenance of public lighting systems, traffic lights, construction of public works, and other construction systems.

At the time of the IPO, the company managed and used many land lots in HCM City and other provinces. Particularly in HCM City, Sapulico has 386sq.m at 121 Châu Văn Liêm, 2,372.5sq.m at 167 Lưu Hữu Phước, 318sq.m at 436 An Dương Vương, 218sq.m at 55 Nguyễn Thi; 680.9sq.m at No. 3 TL14, 2500sq.m in Tân Thạnh Commune, Củ Chi District.

Before equitisation, in the 2012-14 period, CHS had profit after tax ranging from VNĐ80.3 billion to VNĐ102.3 billion per year. When equitised in 2015, the company’s profit after tax in the first nine months reached VNĐ51.5 billion.

However, after equitisation, Sapulico’s business results dropped sharply. In 2017, CHS achieved revenue of VNĐ383 billion and profit after tax of VNĐ25.3 billion; in 2018, revenue was VNĐ375 billion and profit after tax was VNĐ23.9 billion; in 2019, revenue reached VNĐ404 billion and profit after tax was VNĐ31.5 billion.

PCM: profit only reaches 5 per cent of the set plan

Post and Telecommunications Construction Material JSC (PCM) has a charter capital of VNĐ40 billion, the state capital accounts for 49 per cent, and is managed by the Vietnam Posts and Telecommunications Group.

The company manages and uses many large land lots such as 9,419.2sq.m at 64 Cầu Diễn Street in Hà Nội; 11,547.2sq.m in Lộc Hà in Đông Anh, 29,218sq.m in Nam Sơn Ward, in Ninh Bình Province; 63.3sq.m in 57/20 Bầu Cát in HCM City; and 5,330.3sq.m in Tam Điệp Commune, Ninh Bình Province.

In recent years, the company’s business performance has been relatively poor, with dividends all below 2.5 per cent per year. In 2021, it was only 0.19 per cent.

In 2021, the COVID-19 pandemic strongly affected the company’s business activities. The company also faced problems such as limited human resources and low efficiency. PCM achieved revenue of VNĐ51.2 billion, profit after tax was only VNĐ75 million in the year. This profit reached only 5 per cent of the plan approved by the annual general meeting of shareholders.

In the first six months of 2022, the company achieved revenue of VNĐ30.37 billion, an increase of 59.8 per cent over the same period in 2021; profit after tax reached VNĐ225.4 million.

— VNS   LINK

Source: Dinar Recaps

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