Vietnam

Vietnam's slow reopening this past week was bittersweet for Stanley Furniture, which had been in COVID lockdown along with thousands of other manufacturers, from Netflix supplier ASRock to shoe giant Pou Chen. On the one hand, Stanley employees were glad to go back to making desks and drawers. On the other, their goods are stuck in storage because global shipping costs skyrocketed, Nikkei Asia reported. That is just one of many risks hanging over the fragile supply chain even after Ho Chi Minh City and surrounding provinces on Friday lifted a bruising pandemic shutdown.
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After a bruising 18 months of the pandemic, this fall represented a fresh start for the apparel company Everlane. It was preparing to release a slew of new products, with September marking the beginning of an ambitious marketing campaign around its denim. Instead, Everlane has spent this month scrambling just to get jeans — along with other products like bags and shoes — out of Vietnam, where a surge in coronavirus cases has forced factories to either close or operate at severely reduced capacity with staff living in on-site bubbles, the New York Times reported.
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Vietnam's growing dominance as a furniture exporter is at risk as trade authorities in the U.S., its biggest market, probe the country's timber industry and its ties to illegal logging abroad, Nikkei Asia reported. The sector has boomed in recent years, thanks in part to former U.S. President Donald Trump's trade war with China, which saw tariffs as high as 25% slapped on Chinese furniture exports. Vietnam, in fact, overtook China last year in furniture exports to the U.S., shipping $7.4 billion worth of the goods, compared with China's $7.3 billion, reported Vietnam News Agency.
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Three Vietnamese banks have pledged to lend 4 trillion dong ($173.8 million) to Vietnam Airlines to help the troubled flag carrier weather the impact of the pandemic and avoid bankruptcy, state media reported on Monday, according to Reuters. Vietnam Maritime Commercial Joint Stock Bank, Saigon - Hanoi Commercial Joint Stock Bank and SeABank would make the interest-free loans this month and early next month, the Lao Dong newspaper cited the central bank as saying.
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Southeast Asian low-cost carriers, a key growth engine for planemakers and leasing companies for a decade before the pandemic, are faltering financially as demand plunges, raising questions over whether they can replace and double their fleets, the International New York Times reported on a Reuters story. Auditors for Malaysia's AirAsia Group Bhd and Vietnam's VietJet Aviation JSC are concerned about cashflows and funding, while Indonesia's Lion Air has put the brakes on a planned flotation.

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Fitch Ratings has upgraded its rating for Vietnam, noting the country’s improving track record on economic policy, debt and reform, the Financial Times reported. The rating agency said Vietnam’s long-term foreign-currency issuer default rating has been upgraded to BB with a stable outlook, from BB-, and that it expected Vietnam to remain among the fastest-growing economies in the Asia-Pacific region. “Vietnam's track record of policy-making focused on strong macroeconomic performance has been improving,” the agency said, adding that growth of 6.7 per cent is expected this year amid st
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Vietnam's central bank will acquire all shares in a small, loss-making bank in Hanoi, a unit of Ocean Group Co, to ensure the banking system's safety, the second move in less than two months as it seeks to clean up the fragmented sector. "The State Bank has announced its compulsory purchase of all the shares owned by existing shareholders in Dai Duong (Ocean) Commercial Bank," the State Bank of Vietnam said in a statement on Saturday.
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Vietnam’s central bank appears to be fulfilling its recent promise to accelerate the restructuring of the country’s banking system, which is burdened with non-performing loans, The Wall Street Journal Frontiers blog reported. This week, the central bank announced it had taken over the unlisted Vietnam Construction Bank, which has reportedly been losing money, and put it under the management of the Bank for Foreign Trade of Vietnam — known as Vietcombank — which is more than 90% state-owned.
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Vietnam may change rules to quicken bad-debt sales that have been stalled by a reluctance to accept losses, hampering an economy that risks missing its growth target this year, Bloomberg News reported today. “Right now, everyone seems to be afraid of taking responsibility for creating losses to the state, so no one dares to make decisions to sell any debt at very low prices,” Nguyen Duc Kien, deputy head of the National Assembly’s Economic Committee, said in an interview yesterday.
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Vietnam’s economic growth accelerated as exports climbed, even as banks struggled to meet the government’s lending target, Bloomberg News reported yesterday. Gross domestic product rose 6.04 percent in the fourth quarter from a year earlier, quickening from a 5.54 percent gain in the three months through September, according to data released by the General Statistics Office in Hanoi yesterday. For the full year, the economy grew 5.42 percent, faster than a 5.25 percent pace in 2012.
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