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Failing to take over division of South Korean firm, billionaire works with US partner

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Vietnam’s dollar billionaire Pham Nhat Vuong did not succeed with his plan to take over LG’s smartphone production division in Vietnam and Brazil, but has taken new moves in the US market.

Failing to take over division of South Korean firm, billionaire works with US partner

Vingroup failed to take over LG’s smartphone production division

Vingroup share prices have stayed firmly in the highest level in one year, which allowed the assets of the billionaire to reach $7.3 billion and help him remain the top billionaire in Vietnam.

The Korea Times reported that the negotiation between LG Electronics and Vingroup on the transfer of mobile phone manufacturing factories in Vietnam and Brazil has collapsed because of disagreement about price.

The information about the negotiations caught special attention from the public. South Korean media commented that Vingroup was a suitable client for LG because the Vietnamese group now wants to expand its business to hi-tech manufacturing. It has capability and ambitions to develop in the field.

LG wanted to sell its mobile phone production division to Vingroup because the South Korean group has faced financial difficulties in recent years, and it plans to gather strength in other divisions, including making electric vehicle parts.

Meanwhile, Vuong’s plan to scale up his production and business in the field has been going smoothly, with the number of Vsmart phones sold in the domestic market increasing steadily though it only joined the smartphone market in 2018.

Vingroup has become the third largest mobile phone manufacturer in Vietnam, just after Samsung Electronics and Oppo.

The information about the prices of Vingroup’s first smartphone products recently appeared at AT&T, the US’ leading network operator. Analysts say that this is proof of Vuong’s plan to enter the US smartphone market.

Three smartphone models, Fusion Z (V340U), Motivate (V341U) and Maestro Plus (V350U) manufactured by VinSmart, have officially hit AT&T’s shelves.

Many analysts said that the purchase of LG’s smartphone manufacturing division in Vietnam and Brazil would help Vingroup’s Vsmart easily enter the North American market. The move would also help Vingroup make strides in smartphone manufacturing thanks to LG’s fame, technology and network.

However, the latest happening showed that Vingroup can follow other ways to penetrate the choosy North American market before targeting other markets.

They also said that Vuong’s ambitions in the fields of technology and industrial manufacturing are very high, with Vsmart phones and VinFast cars and electric cars. However, difficulties are still ahead.

Vingroup in recent years has withdrawn from some business fields. It has sold the retail division to billionaire Nguyen Dang Quang and transferred the youth football training center to Van Lang Education, though it has gained great achievements in the fields. 

V. Ha

Source: https://vietnamnet.vn/en/business/failing-to-take-over-division-of-south-korean-firm-billionaire-works-with-us-partner-715202.html

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High logistic costs hinder Delta agriculture exports

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High cost of air transport and the inability to preserve fresh produce for a long time are among the logistic challenges that the Mekong Delta is facing. – Photo baoangiang.com.vn

MEKONG DELTA – Agriculture exports from the Mekong Delta are facing logistical challenges, affecting their competitiveness overseas.

Đồng Văn Thanh, chairman of Hậu Giang Province People’s Committee, said the Mekong Delta exports millions of tonnes of agriculture products every year but the region is facing many logistical choke-points.

The region is lacking key logistics hubs and storage areas for empty containers and products at ports. Goods have to be transported through many areas before reaching HCM City for export, which increases the cost.

Ngô Tường Vy, deputy director of Chánh Thu Fruit Export and Import Co. Ltd in Bến Tre Province, said that the cost of air transport of fresh fruits to the US and European markets have increased greatly over the years.

For example, the cost for air shipping fresh fruits to the US used to be around US$3.5 per kilo a few years ago, but now has risen to $6 per kilo.

This is affecting their competitiveness overseas and reducing the amount of fruit shipped there.

However, since preservation technology for many fruit products is not good enough, they have to rely on air transport.

The cost of ocean transport of fruit is 15 times cheaper than air, so better preservation technology to maintain quality on longer container trips is important, she said.

Phạm Tiến Hoài, general director of Hanh Nguyen Logistics, said that the logistics costs of Việt Nam’s agricultural products are high, usually accounting for around 30 per cent of their final prices, so they struggle to compete with goods from other suppliers such as China, Thailand and Indonesia.

Võ Thanh Phong, general director of Hậu Giang Maritime Service Co.Ltd , said the Government needs to continue its effort to improve and enlarge waterways in the Mekong Delta so that large vessels can easily travel through different regions, reducing transport time and costs.

Lê Tiến Châu, provincial party secretary of Hậu Giang, said that for 2021 – 2026 the province will invest around VNĐ18 trillion ($777.99 million) to improve traffic infrastructure and region connectivity.

Every year the Mekong Delta accounts for 90 per cent of the country’s rice exports, and 70 per cent of fruit exports. –

Source: https://vietnamnews.vn/economy/926005/high-logistic-costs-hinder-delta-agriculture-exports.html

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Danang suspends BRT project due to its ineffectiveness

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A BRT bus is seen at a bus station in Hanoi. The government of Danang City has decided to suspend its BRT project as the investment in the project has yet to bring about social advantages for the coastal central city – PHOTO: TPO

HCMC – The government of Danang City has decided to suspend its bus rapid transit (BRT) project as the investment in the project has yet to bring about social advantages for the coastal central city.

Huynh Anh Vu, deputy director of the Danang City Management Board of Prioritized Infrastructure Investment Projects, which is the project’s developer and operator, confirmed that the management board had reached a consensus with the World Bank, which serves as the lender of the project, on its suspension.

Instead, the management board will focus on completing works related to the development of subsidized bus routes in the city, Vu said, as reported by Lao Dong newspaper.

The decision is considered as the right move as the city’s transport infrastructure system still remains inadequate and measures taken to encourage the use of public means of transport among local residents have not proved effective.

The move was strongly backed by the locals and some of them cited the examples of other localities where trillions of dong were poured into BRT projects but they had failed to address traffic congestion and caused losses to the State budget.

In 2013, the Government approved a master project to develop Danang sustainably with five components: improving the rainwater and drainage system, piloting the BRT system, developing key urban roads, enhancing the capacity and supporting the execution of projects and works transferred from prioritized infrastructure investment projects.

The master project was expected to be completed in June this year, but it has been 84% complete to date with US$185 million spent. Specifically, the BRT project has been 33% complete, while the remaining components have basically been finalized.

Source: https://english.thesaigontimes.vn/81444/danang-suspends-brt-project-due-to-its-ineffectiveness.html

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Some coastal hotels report full occupancy as tourists are on the rise

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Tourists play outdoor games at a resort. Many hotels in Ba Ria-Vung Tau Province have reported full occupancy as the number of tourists is on the rise – PHOTO: LDO

HCMC – Many hotels in Ba Ria-Vung Tau Province have reported full occupancy as the number of tourists is on the rise, though the holidays of April 30 and May 1 are still a while away, signaling good news for the tourism sector.

Nguyen Van Tuan, manager of Long Hai Hotel in Ba Ria-Vung Tau Province, told Lao Dong Online that over the past one year, the hotel saw few guests and its highest occupancy rate at a mere 20%. However, for some days last week, the number of tourists who booked rooms at the hotel surged, with the occupancy rate at 90%.

For April 17 and 18, the hotel is fully booked, and it is the first time since the coronavirus pandemic that the hotel is seeing some 100 rooms in total fully booked, Tuan said, adding that the hotel was fully booked three weeks ago for the Reunification Day, April 30.

Last weekend, many guests fully booked rooms at Vietsovpetro Ho Tram, said a representative of the resort.

Many hotels at sea tourist destinations near HCMC such as Ho Tram, Long Hai, Vung Tau and Mui Ne are seeing the number of guests soar on weekends.

Do Van Thuc, deputy director of Dat Viet Tour, said that the firm had received rising tour bookings on weekends.

Recently, Dat Viet Tour has been seeing an average 1,500 guests book weekend tours to the sea each week, some 200 kilometers from HCMC, he said.

Apart from this, since March, when the coronavirus outbreak was brought under control in Vietnam, Alo Limo, a transport firm, has become busier on weekends, said Le Gia Thanh Tam, a representative of Alo Limo.

Over the past few weeks, each week has seen some 10-15 groups of tourists book limousines for their trips, mainly to Dalat, Phan Thiet and Vung Tau, Tam said.

Source: https://english.thesaigontimes.vn/81445/some-coastal-hotels-report-full-occupancy-as-tourists-are-on-the-rise.html

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