Wednesday, 17 Jan 2018

Round up 2017 with ten key Vietnam economic events

Updated at Sunday, 31 Dec 2017, 17:31
The Hanoitimes - With 2018 coming closer by hours, have a look back the year 2017 with most outstanding pieces in Vietnam economic picture.
1. GDP increased higher than expected
2017 marked the unexpected growth of GDP, the whole year GDP reached 6.81%. In the first two quarters of this year, GDP growth was steady and recorded a breakthrough of 7.46% in the third quarter of 2017.
2. Import-export turnover reached USD 400 billion
On December 19, the General Department of Vietnam Customs held a ceremony to record the goods import and export amount of USD 400 billion. Overcoming both subjective and objective difficulties and challenges, Vietnam has made strong progress in import-export activities. Specifically, in the beginning of 21st century (2001), total import and export turnover of Vietnam is only at a modest figure of more than $ 30 billion. In December 2007, after becoming an official member of the World Trade Organization (WTO), import and export turnover reached more than USD 100 billion. Over the next four years (2011), the import and export scale has doubled, reaching USD 200 billion. Four years later (2015) was $ 300 billion. Over the next two years, total import and export turnover has reached USD 400 billion. Thus, after 10 years of WTO accession, Vietnam's total import and export turnover has increased four times.
3.Foreign exchange reserves increased to record amount
2017 is considered a very successful year in the monetary policy of the State Bank. A number of management imprints have been recognized such as the stabilization and reduction of interest rate market, which contributed positively in production and business. The VND / USD exchange rate has also had a "quiet" year with the USD reduction by 1.4% and highest forex reserves (about USD 50 billion);
4.High record FDI
Foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows into Vietnam in 2017 hit a record with registering capital of $ 36 billion, increased by nearly 45 percent from 2016. This has nearly doubled compared to the past four years (USD 20 billion in 2014). FDI amount has also reached the highest level with USD 17.5 billion.
5. Bitcoin
In Vietnam, Bitcoin has spread to big cities. Hundreds of people have invested in this virtual money. Regardless of the regulator's recommendation to not accept Bitcoin as a means of payment, many still invest in this currency.
6. Fluctuation in the industry and trade
2017 is considered to be a historic year for the industry and trade as a result of many hot issues. Hundreds of administrative procedures related to business activities in petroleum business, mineral export, coal export, rice, specialized inspection, energy labeling ... were removed by the Ministry of Industry and Trade. With hundreds of administrative procedures removed, the Ministry of Industry and Trade is considered one of the most reformed ministries of the year. However, in terms of business, these changes have not resolved the "urgent" matters that businesses have to bear for many years when the core regulations have not been abolished.
7. Change "knocked down" the BOT toll station
After the BOT deployment, the pressure on fees began to reveal. Many drivers opposed by paying change in Ben Thuy bridge toll station (boundary between Nghe An and Ha Tinh) at the end of 2016. Hac Tri (Phu Tho), Luong Son (Hoa Binh), National Highway 32 (Phu Tho), Quan Hau (Quang Binh) station were also opposed for several months.
In addition, BOT Cai Lay, Ninh An (Khanh Hoa province), Phu Gia - Phuoc Tuong (Thua Thien Hue), BOT Bien Hoa (Dong Nai) and National Highway No. 5 (passing Hung Yen) stations were also opposed.
8. The proposal of supplementing five more kinds of taxes
In 2017, the financial department drew the attention of the whole society when proposing a massive change in indirect taxes on consumers, in which most proposals were increased the tax amount. In which, there are proposals for increasing VAT from 10% to 12%, moving tax exempted or reduced goods to common taxable groups, such as domestic water, medical or education equipment, increasing excise taxes on cigarettes.... Most people is not in agreement with these proposals.
9. Huge divestment transaction
2017 marks the huge and successful divestment of state capital. In November, the SCIC decided to sell 3.33% of charter capital at Vinamilk. On December 18, more than 343 million state-owned shares in Sabeco, equivalent to 53% of the shares, were suddenly bought by two investors.
The two successful auctions have conveyed a message: Foreign investors are looking forward to the divestment of large state-owned enterprises in 2018.
10. Disaster "washed away" more than USD 2.6 billion
Losses due to natural disasters last year were severe, with nearly 390 deaths and missing, economic losses of about VND 60 trillion (USD 2.6 billion), which halted production, severely affecting the ecology environment and sustainable development of the economy.
Cam Anh
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