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Global media positive about Vietnam’s growth despite COVID-19



A number of regional and global news agencies have quoted data from international research institutes and organisations as saying that Vietnam’s economy is on track to grow despite the impact of COVID-19.

Global media positive about Vietnam’s growth despite COVID-19 hinh anh 1

At an economic forum in Ho Chi Minh City (Photo: VNA)

On November 19, the UK’s affirmed that Vietnam is one of a few countries to have controlled the pandemic to a certain degree, with a low number of infections and fatalities. The World Bank also forecast that Vietnam’s GDP would grow 2.8 percent this year and 6.8 percent next.

UK newswire also hailed the country for mitigating the economic damage caused by the pandemic and being the only country in the region on track to post growth in 2020.

Though Vietnam lacks the health infrastructure of wealthier countries, it has been widely praised for its public health measures, which quickly brought COVID-19 under control. It was quick to develop testing kits and used a combination of strategic testing and aggressive contact tracing to help control numbers, it said.

The country’s once-thriving tourism sector has taken a particularly heavy hit but the country has so far avoided the worst economic effects of the pandemic.

The newspaper also quoted VinaCapital’s chief economist Michael Kokalari as saying that people are buying new laptops or new office furniture, for work and for spending more time at home. A lot of these products are made in Vietnam.

The pandemic has also prompted more companies to consider manufacturing in Vietnam because of the need to diversify supply chains. “Companies thought they had a global supply chain, but when COVID-19 arrived they found they only had a China supply chain and couldn’t produce,” Kokalari said.

He added that Vietnam’s exports to the US increased 23 percent in the first three quarters compared to the same period of 2019, with electronics exports up 26 percent.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) also predicted that Vietnam’s economy would grow 2.4 percent this year thanks to decisive steps to contain the health and economic fallout from the pandemic. It forecasts a strong economic recovery in 2021, with growth projected to strengthen to 6.5 percent “as the normalisation of domestic and foreign economic activity continues.”

Meanwhile, Malaysia’s quoted chief Asia-Pacific economist Steve Cochrane as saying that, as of September, Vietnam together with regional states such as Singapore, Taiwan (China), Malaysia, and New Zealand had each reported year-on-year growth.

Overall, Cochrane said the baseline economic outlook called for growth across the entire Asia-Pacific region in 2021, with the fastest growth being in China, Vietnam, and Hong Kong (China).

The UK’s, meanwhile, quoted the Vietnam Holding Fund as saying it anticipates that the country’s economy will return to growth above 6 percent next year given its “multiple engines of growth.”

The fund said the country’s resiliency during the pandemic “helped raise its profile as a major trade partner” and he expects trade relations between the country and other nations to “gain further momentum”./.VNA



Vietnamese firms urged to file for IP protection in foreign markets



Lục Ngạn lychee of Bắc Giang Province was protected geographical indication in Japan. Vietnamese firms are urged to pay more attention to register for intellectual property protection in foreign markets. — Photo

HÀ NỘI — Vietnamese firms should attach more importance to registering for intellectual property protection in foreign markets if they wish to develop brands abroad, according to the National Office of Intellectual Property (NOIP).

NOIP’s statistics show that there were about 50,000 applications for intellectual property protection in the domestic market but only around 280 applications for protection in foreign markets. This reflects that Vietnamese firms are not paying adequate attention to intellectual property protections in the import and export sector.

Phạm Ngọc Luận, CEO of Meet More Coffee, said that after exporting several batches of coffee to South Korea, his company proceeded to apply for protection of the Meet More brand. However, the application was rejected for the reason that the brand was already registered in the South Korean market.

Luận was surprised to learn that it was his company’s distribution partner who had registered the Meet More brand in the Republic of Korea. Fortunately, his company successfully negotiated with his distribution partner to get the rights to the name.

There are also lessons to learn from past trademark disputes in foreign markets for companies like Trung Nguyên Coffee, Vinataba, Bến Tre coconut candy or Phú Quốc fish sauce.

Most recently an application to trademark ST25 rice was lodged in the US to the ire of the local scientists who developed the new strain of rice.

NOIP’s Deputy Director Trần Lê Hồng said that Vietnamese firms must pay attention to building and protecting brands if they want to engage with foreign markets.

Hồng said that the protection of brands was territorial, meaning that if a trademark was protected in Việt Nam, this did not mean that the trademark was also protected in other markets. Businesses needed to consider registering for trademark protection in foreign countries, he stressed.

According to Nguyễn Quốc Thịnh from Thương Mại University, there are several reasons that make Vietnamese enterprises hesitant to register for trademark protection in foreign markets.

The first reason is the lack of awareness. Other reasons were that enterprises were discouraged by complicated procedures together with the high cost of registering in some markets that made it difficult for small and medium – sized enterprises. 

“It is time Vietnamese enterprises started to seriously consider establishing protection for their brands in foreign markets which is critical to their development,” Thịnh said.

According to Hồng, enterprises could get support from the NOIP to register brand protection abroad or get consultations from about 200 IP consultancy firms in Việt Nam.

Hồng said that the registry for trademark protection should be put into consideration together with a detailed business plan for specific markets. —


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Digital channels outperform TV in helping brands reach audiences in Southeast Asia



A study by Kantar and Facebook of 64 multi-media campaigns in six Southeast Asian markets including Việt Nam in 2016-20 found digital touch points to be more efficient than television in reaching consumers. — Photo courtesy of Facebook

HCM CITY— Digital channels have outperformed television in helping brands reach Southeast Asian audiences, according to a study by Kantar Cross Media Study and Facebook.

It examined 64 multi-media campaigns across six Southeast Asian markets including Việt Nam in 2016-20, finding that digital touch points were more important and impactful throughout the consumer journey.

Digital channels help brands reach more people, facilitate emotional connection and a sense of preference for brands, and turn the audience into consumers.

Especially during the pandemic, digital solutions showcase greater impact and value-for-money.

While the costs for TV are notably high, platforms like Facebook and YouTube are proving themselves two times more cost-effective in driving reach.

Overall, digital-led campaigns commit higher return-on-investment, increasing, notably, motivation to purchase 1.5 times. 

Among digital channels, Facebook is the top platform, helping brands achieve efficacy across indicators and optimise their budget.

According to key insights shared at the recent Facebook Video Summit, the time spent using social media in Việt Nam increased by over 40 per cent between 2013 and 2020.

Amid the COVID-19 outbreak, 89 per cent of users said, social networks help them engage more and better with businesses. 

Bryan Võ, marketing science partner, Facebook Vietnam, said: “Digital channels are now increasingly prioritised by brands, thanks to their high efficacy in driving brand and sales impact at a lower cost compared to traditional channels.” —


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Ninh Thuận shifts towards ‘green economy’



Trung Nam Group’s wind farm in Ninh Thuận Province is the largest in Việt Nam. — VNA/ Photo Công Thử

HCM CITY — The south-central province of Ninh Thuận saw a strong economic growth rate of more than 12 per cent over the last two years, thanks to advantages in marine economy and renewable energy.

In the past five years, the province’s development orientation has shifted to a green economy for sustainable development, and economic competitiveness and efficiency.

It prioritizes energy; tourism; agriculture; forestry and fishery; industry; education and training; and construction and real estate. These groups of industries are expected to contribute 91 per cent to the province’s GDP and 85 per cent of  jobs.

According to the province’s Statistics Office, the province’s total state budget revenue in the first five months of this year reached about VNĐ1.8 trillion (US$78.4 million), equivalent to its state budget revenue in 2015.

Last year, the province’s gross regional domestic product (​GRDP) was estimated at 12 per cent. Meanwhile, its total state budget revenue was estimated at VNĐ3.9 trillion ($169.8 million), exceeding 11.4 per cent of the plan.

The industrial production value reached nearly VNĐ17 trillion ($740 million) last year, a year-on-year increase of 22.5 per cent.

The value of the solar power sector rose by 147.8 per cent and the wind power sector increased by 58.5 per cent.

Provincial tourism has strongly developed in the past five years. The province has advantages in tourism development, with 59 cultural heritage sites, and unspoiled beaches and islands.

The 100km-long coast from Thuận Bắc District’s Công Hải Commune to Thuận Nam District’s Cà Ná Commune offers a charming natural landscape. On one side is the primaeval forest and on the other the blue ocean.

There are popular tourist attractions such as Vĩnh Hy Bay, Rái Cave, Ninh Chữ – Bình Sơn beach, Cà Ná beach, Mũi Dinh (Dinh Headland) and Thái An Vineyard.

The province also offers favourable weather for exploiting the potential of marine sports and activities. However, only the Tanyoli Tourist Area in Ninh Phước District’s Phước Dinh Commune provides tourists with marine sport tourism services.

Phan Tấn Cảnh, deputy chairman of the provincial People’s Committee, said the committee had approved a plan to build a sports complex on the beach along Đông Hải Ward in Phan Rang-Tháp Chàm City.

It will serve both locals and tourists, including a sports centre designed for windsurfing, parasailing, flyboarding and scuba diving. It will help Phan Rang – Tháp Chàm City become the first metropolis in experiential tourism in the region.

Nguyễn Đức Chi, the investor of Ninh Chữ Sailing Bay project, said the province was catching up with current tourism development trends.

Phan Rang-Tháp Chàm will be the first locality in the country developing beach resorts combined with experiential tourism services.

Other tourist cities such as Nha Trang, Đà Lạt, and Phan Thiết cities are lacking experiential tourism services. “There will be a great opportunity for the province to become a high-quality experiential tourism hub,” he said.

Wind power combined with eco-tourism

Dr Dư Văn Toán from the Việt Nam Institute of Seas and Islands said Ninh Thuận should move toward combining wind power with eco-tourism to boost the local economy.

For example, a wind power plant built in a coastal area in southwest France has earned higher revenue from tourism than wind power generation.

According to CBRE Việt Nam’s research and consulting department, tourism companies could work with investors of wind power projects on creating tours to wind farms including education on wind power and renewable energy.

The provincial People’s Committee has urged the Department of Industry and Trade to build a plan to turn Ninh Thuận into the country’s renewable energy centre.

The Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism has been assigned to give investment priority to areas with potential for marine tourism development.

The province targets 3.5 million visitors by 2025 and six million visitors by 2030.

By 2025, the province’s economic growth is expected to rise by 1.9 times compared to 2020.

Its GRDP could reach about VNĐ6.5 trillion ($282.3 million). The marine economy would account for 42 per cent. —


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