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Việt Nam  GDP to grow by 8 per cent: Oxford Economics

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Việt Nam’s GDP is expected to grow by 8 per cent this year. — Photo

HCM CITY — Southeast Asia’s economic growth will rebound to 6.2 per cent in 2021 with Việt Nam achieving 8 per cent growth, according to the latest economic outlook report from Oxford Economics commissioned by chartered accountancy body ICAEW.

GDP across the region contract by 4.1 per cent in 2020, with countries that had been successful in controlling the pandemic like Việt Nam and Singapore leading the recovery. 

Indeed, Việt Nam was expected to be the only economy to record positive growth in 2020.

The rebound was in part due to the low-base effect of 2020, but policies were set to remain very accommodative with extensive fiscal support and low interest rates.

Prolonged lockdowns and social distancing measures in the region were forecast to cap global GDP growth in 2021, making it unlikely that a return to pre-COVID GDP and trade activity would take place before late 2021. 

In Southeast Asia, growth would likely be constrained by social distancing measures, but restrictions would continue to be eased over this year, especially in economies that would be able to roll out vaccines relatively quickly.

An economic rebound in 2021 remained contingent on the easing of lockdown restrictions, global recovery momentum and the successful roll-out of vaccines. 

Progress on vaccination would be an important barometer for growth, with services likely to catch up faster in economies better placed with regard to vaccine procurement and distribution. 

Southeast Asia experienced a three-speed recovery, with differences primarily driven by the varying success of countries’ ability to contain fresh waves of infection and implement lockdown exit strategies to safely reopen their economies and fiscal and monetary policy support. 

Mark Billington, ICAEW regional director, Greater China and South-East Asia, said: “The biggest concern for Southeast Asian economies is keeping additional waves of infection at bay while gradually bringing society and economic activities back to speed.

“The interconnectedness of the global economy means that countries will have to work collectively to strengthen their pandemic response plans and address the dual challenges of resuming business activities while keeping their people safe.” 

Despite the predictions of an economic rebound in 2021, there remain major uncertainties that could affect post-pandemic recovery, such as slow progress in the roll-out of mass vaccination programmes, a global second wave resulting in another global lockdown and a financial crisis leading to major economic damage. 

Optimistically, vaccine breakthroughs and post-election US stimulus could also speed up near-term recovery and avoid long-term damage, the report said. —

 

 

Source: https://vietnamnews.vn/economy/856708/viet-nam-gdp-to-grow-by-8-per-cent-oxford-economics.html

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Pork price not expected to spike during Lunar New Year

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A consumer buys meat at a Hapro supermarket in Hà Nội. — VNA/ Photo Phương Anh

HÀ NỘI —Demand for pork rises in the run up to Lunar New Year (Tết), prices are expected to increase, but not rise to the levels seen last year.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development said out of 5.37 million tonnes of meat consumed during this period last year, 3.8 million tonnes were pork.

Pig production remains healthy, and across 16 provinces the reproduction rate has topped 100 per cent, with more than 27 million animals available.

However, Nguyễn Văn Trọng, deputy director of the Livestock Breeding General Department under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, said prices would rise as demand grows.

Currently, live pigs are priced at VNĐ83,000-85,000 (US$3.5) per kilo but Trọng said although prices would rise, they would not reach levels seen last year.

He also said there would not be any expected shortages of the meat, but they were stepping up measures to preventing illegal exports to China. 

According to the Department of Animal Health, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, the country imported nearly 226,000 tonnes of pork last year, a year-on-year increase of 260 per cent.

The main import markets are from Russia, Poland, Brazil, Canada, the US, Germany and Spain.

This year, 600 tonnes of pork have been imported to supplement supplies for the Tết market.

More than half a million pigs were imported from Thailand for slaughter from mid-June last year to January 13 this year. —

Source: https://vietnamnews.vn/economy/860085/pork-price-not-expected-to-spike-during-lunar-new-year.html

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HCM City, southern provinces step up efforts against fake goods, contraband as Tết approaches

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Smuggling and trade fraud are on the rise ahead of Tết, which falls on February 12. —VNA/ Photo.

HCM CITY – Officers tasked with preventing fake goods, trade fraud and smuggling in HCM City and southern border provinces have been forced to work hard ahead of Tết (Lunar New Year), which falls on February 12 this year.

Last week the HCM City customs department discovered 14 steel containers that consignee V.V Steel Company described wrongly to evade tax.

The company, in Long An Province’s Đức Hòa District, made a declaration that would have allowed it to enjoy 0 per cent tax instead of the 10-15 per cent it had to pay, equivalent to VNĐ1 billion (US$43,000).

Now, besides the tax it will also have to pay a penalty of 20 per cent of the amount.

Smuggling and trade fraud are becoming increasingly sophisticated.

Trương Văn Ba, director of the HCM City Market Surveillance Department, said last year 25,538 violations had been discovered involving loss of tax revenues of VNĐ5.8 trillion.

Competent agencies filed charges in 113  cases.

According to Steering Committee 389 of HCM City, inspections had been reduced due to the Covid-19 pandemic but specifically target warehouses, yards and sites where large volumes of smuggled goods are likely to be concealed, improving the efficiency of prevention efforts.

According to the city police, local militia have been urged to look out for dubious activities and crack down on the trade in prohibited, smuggled and counterfeit goods.

Drugs, weapons, illegal firecrackers, unsafe and violent toys, and cigarettes are in the sights of officials.

The city border guard force, the Southern Border Guard Soldiers’ Department of Drug and Crime Prevention, naval squadron No 28 under the Việt Nam Border Defence Force, and border forces in Bà Rịa – Vũng Tàu and Tiền Giang provinces will look out for possible violations at estuaries, sea ports and sea borders .

The city is also calling on businesses and consumers to join hands in the fight against smuggling and trade fraud.

Cross-border smuggling

Border authorities in the Cửu Long (Mekong) Delta provinces of An Giang, Kiên Giang and Đồng Tháp are stepping up efforts to keep out smuggled goods, which usually increases during the year-end period.

The contraband is mostly cigarettes and sugar brought in through the Châu Đốc City border in An Giang Province.

Smugglers transport the goods from Cambodia in boats, motorbikes and trucks at night to evade officers, but if spotted are not averse to attacking them.

Kiên Giang Province’s Hà Tiên City also sees smuggling of goods from across the border, usually late at night.

Smugglers travel in groups and transport large quantities of contraband, mainly foreign-made cigarettes.

Authorities have discovered hundreds of cases of smuggling and confiscated tens of thousands of packs of cigarettes and other goods.

Fishing boats are used to illegally transport and sell oil and petrol at sea.

Hundreds of thousands of litres of oil of unknown origin have been seized by local agencies, who have also collected billions of đồng in fines.

The An Giang Province steering committee for anti-smuggling, trade fraud and fake goods said troops were patrolling border gates, trails and crossings to prevent smuggling. –

 

Source: https://vietnamnews.vn/economy/860098/hcm-city-southern-provinces-step-up-efforts-against-fake-goods-contraband-as-tet-approaches.html

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Ensuring information security for cloud computing a key national goal

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Cloud computing will be the main orientation of the country to focus on in the coming time. — Photo vicloud.vn

HÀ NỘI — The Ministry of Information and Communications has determined that the cloud computing platform is a key part of telecommunications infrastructure to focus on in the coming years.

The ministry has also defined cloud computing as the digital infrastructure for the development of a digital government, digital economy and digital society.

“This is one of the main orientations of the country to focus on in the coming time,” said Nguyễn Khắc Lịch, deputy director of the Authority of Information Security, Ministry of Information and Communications, to local technology website ictnews.vn.

It is forecast that the cloud computing market in Việt Nam will reach US$500 million by 2025 with a growth rate of about 30-40 per cent.

The COVID-19 pandemic has created a “push” to promote the development of the cloud computing market and the growth rate of the market hit 40 per cent last year.

Cloud computing is a relatively large “pie” for businesses to compete for and as for the nation, with the importance of new generation telecommunications infrastructure, digital infrastructure, and the ‘Make-in-Việt Nam’ policy, domestic businesses must master this infrastructure.

Lịch said that to develop Vietnamese cloud computing platforms in the right direction, Việt Nam was one of the few countries that have issued a set of technical criteria to evaluate and choose a cloud computing solution for e-government.

The set of technical criteria consists of 153 standards, including 84 technical criteria and 69 information security criteria.

“A cloud computing platform that meets these benchmarks is considered to be a modern and secure platform,” said Lịch.

Lê Hoài Nam, deputy director of Viettel IDC, said with cloud computing services, the market has grown quite rapidly in recent years.

As for Viettel, the growth rate was twice compared to normal from 60 to 80 per cent.

However, Nam said that the story of information security for cloud computing was not only important for Việt Nam but also the world.

This field in Việt Nam was still new, so people were still worried.

However, in addition to financial investment, there was a need for a system of technical staff because the technology was changing and all certificates required by customers are constantly updated. With large service providers such as VNPT and Viettel, the sustainability of service delivery infrastructure will be ensured, he added.

Tống Mạnh Cường, product manager of VNPT IT, said there were two issues, which were whether users paid to use safe services or not and the trust factor.

Enterprises believe that to stimulate demand for cloud computing services, the Government should have activities to promote digital transformation.

The Government, ministries and agencies besides enterprises, should boost non-business public units like the departments of information and communications to deploy public cloud technology.

Source: https://vietnamnews.vn/economy/860146/ensuring-information-security-for-cloud-computing-a-key-national-goal.html

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