RoK-invested ITM Semiconductor Vietnam in the Vietnam - Singapore Industrial Park, Bac Ninh province (Photo: VNA)

Of the figure, 1.02 billion USD was registered to be poured into 202 new projects, up 2.8 percent and 19.1 percent over June and the same period last year, respectively.

Ninety-three existing projects increased their registered capital by a total of 992 million USD, more than two times higher than the same month of 2019. Foreign investors spent nearly 1.13 billion USD to buy stakes at 334 projects, 2.8 times higher than July 2019.

In the first seven months of 2020, Vietnam attracted a total sum of 18.82 billion USD, equivalent to 93.1 percent of the same period last year.

A sum of 10.12 billion USD was disbursed in the seven-month period, equivalent to 95.9 percent of last year’s amount.

There were 1,620 new FDI projects in the period with a total registered capital of 9.46 billion USD, 4 billion USD of which was registered to flow into the Bac Lieu LNG power plan. Average registered capital per project was 5.8 million USD compared to 4.3 million USD in last year’s same period.

About 619 projects had their registered capital increased in the period by more than 4.7 billion USD altogether, up 37.7 percent.

However, capital for share purchases dropped by around 50 percent to 4.64 billion USD.

According to the Foreign Investment Agency, FDI flowed into 18 sectors in January-July, led by the manufacturing and processing industry with total registered capital of more than 8.96 billion USD. Power production and distribution ranked second with a total registered capital of 3.95 billion USD.

Vietnam saw the FDI inflow coming from 104 countries and territories from the beginning of this year. Singapore was the largest investor in the period which registered to pour 6.44 billion USD in Vietnam, followed by the Republic of Korea with 2.8 billion USD, and China with 1.7 billion USD. In terms of new projects, the Republic of Korea ranked first with 421 projects, China came second with 237 projects and Japan came third with 175 projects.

Foreign players invested in 59 out of the country’s 63 provinces and cities in the January-July period, with Bac Lieu province being the top destination thanks to the 4-billion-USD LNG power project. Hanoi ranked second with 2.82 billion USD registered FDI and HCM City third with 2.4 billion USD.

According to the Vietnam News Agency, by the end of July, there were 32,391 valid FDI projects in Vietnam with total registered capital of 380.6 billion USD, 221.8 billion USD was disbursed.

The agency said that the COVID-19 pandemic was weighing on FDI attraction in the period but also created significant opportunities for Vietnam to capture the capital flow spurred by the global shift of value chains, given the country’s improved investment climate and infrastructure system.

The recent European Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam’s Business Climate Index survey found that European business leaders were positive about the country’s business and investment environment with around half predicting that Vietnam’s macro-economic climate would “stabilise and improve” in the next quarter.

According to Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO), fifteen out of 30 Japanese firms chose Vietnam as the destination for production expansion within the Japanese government’s programme to support Japanese firms to diversify their value chains in foreign countries.

Vietnam set the target of attracting 35-36 billion USD in FDI this year.

The country attracted 38.02 billion in FDI last year, up 7.2 percent against 2018 with 20.38 billion USD disbursed.

Agro-forestry-aquaculture export earns 22.3 billion USD

The export turnover of agriculture, forestry and aquaculture in the first seven months of 2020 was estimated at 22.3 billion USD, a decrease of 2.8 percent year-on-year, Vietnam News Agency has reported.

Processing shrimps for export (Photo: VNA)

Of which, the group of major farm produce earned 10.4 billion USD, down 4 percent and aquatic products 4.4 billion USD, decreasing by 6.4 percent. Meanwhile, major forestry products brought home 6.5 billion USD, up 6.7 percent.

In the reviewed period, although many export items saw decreases in turnover over the same period in 2019, increases were recorded in the export of rice, vegetables, cassava, shrimp, timber and wood products, cinnamon, and rattan products.

The country raked in 1.9 billion USD from rice in the period, up 10.9 percent, while earnings from cassava surged 101.8 percent to 107 million USD.

The export turnovers of wooden products, shrimp, and rattan and sedge products respectively reached 4.5 billion USD, nearly 2 billion USD, and 305 million USD, increasing by 9 percent, 12.1 percent, and 14.7 percent.

China remained the biggest importer of Vietnamese agro-forestry-aquaculture products in the last 7 months, accounting for a market share of 24.1 percent with a total value of nearly 5.4 billion USD, down 11.1 percent compared to the same period last year.

Vietnamese traditional long dress to be promoted during 2020 Hue Festival

A day in honor of Ao Dai, Vietnam’s traditional long dress, will be a highlight of the Hue Festival, scheduled to open in the central province of Thua Thien-Hue in September, the Voice of Vietnam (VOV) has reported.

Hue ladies wear Ao Dai and conical hats.

The event aims to promote Hue dress and culture to a wider audience worldwide as part a collective effort to preserve the Ao Dai and promote Ao Dai-based tourism products.

In 1744, after being crowned King of Phu Xuan (the Nguyen dynasty's capital in Hue), Lord Nguyen Phuc Khoat decided to reform the royal court attire.

Since then, the Hue Ao Dai has become the main costume of people in part of the kingdom. Minh Mang, the Nguyen dynasty’s second king, was later credited with popularizing the Ao Dai throughout the kingdom.

Thua Thien-Hue province hopes to build a trademark for the Hue Ao Dai and will encourage locals to don the dress during the 2020 Hue Festival and demonstrate it designed for school wear, for everyday wear, for traditional festivals, and for special family rituals.

“When we think of Hue, the first things that cross our minds are violet Ao Dai, conical hats, and the long glossy hair of Hue ladies. Violet Ao Dai are associated with nowhere else but Hue,” said designer Dang Thi Minh Hanh.

Research into the Hue Ao Dai will shape a new Ao Dai Museum in Thua Thien-Hue province, where local authorities intend to preserve the traditional five-paneled Ao Dai and hold a modern Ao Dai design contest.

Painter Nguyen Duc Binh, chief of the Dinh Lang Viet (Vietnamese Communal Houses) Club, which is keen on preserving ancient heritages, said, “The province should sponsor research into both men’s and women’s Ao Dai. Hue needs an Ao Dai museum to promote the costume and provide a source of materials for further research. The five-paneled dress, which is starting to disappear, should be reinvigorated.”

Thua Thien-Hue province is compiling a dossier to request recognition of the Ao Dai as a national cultural heritage and then seek UNESCOt title in the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity category.

“The project ‘Hue - Vietnam’s Ao Dai Capital’ will create an Ao Dai exhibition and hold a celebration day on which all Hue people, both men and women, will wear the traditional dress," said Phan Ngoc Tho, Chairman of the Thua Thien-Hue provincial People’s Committee, adding that this year Ao Dai Day will fall on September 2 during the Hue Festival./.

Compiled by BTA