Vietnamese overseas remittances to Ho Chi Minh City rise sharply

Saturday, 22/04/2023 20:15
Vietnamese overseas remittances to Ho Chi Minh City reached more than US$2.1 billion in the first quarter this year, up 19.41% year on year, amid economic difficulty, Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper reported.
Overseas remittances to Vietnam are expected to rise this year. (Illustrative image). 

The remittances from Asia accounted for 43% of the total thanks to the continent’s steady economic growth, said Nguyen Duc Lenh, deputy director of the State Bank of Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh City branch.

Meanwhile, the remittances from other regions such as the Americas, Africa, and Oceania, decreased due to economic difficulty and rising inflation.

According to the World Bank, remittances to Vietnam last year amounted to nearly US$19 billion, a year-on-year rise of 5%, making Vietnam among the top 10 remittance recipients in the world.

Of last year’s figure, US$6.6 billion was channeled into Ho Chi Minh City.

Three foreign investors to pour US$3.7 billion into Vietnamese projects

Three firms from the Republic of Korea (RoK), Germany, and Japan are planning to inject US$3.7 billion into investment projects in Vietnam, revealed Investment Minister Nguyen Chi Dung during a meeting between the Prime Minister and foreign businesses in Hanoi on April 22, reported VOV.

An overview of the April 22 meeting in Hanoi between Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh and foreign businesses operating in Vietnam. 

Dung said a Korean firm would invest US$1.6 billion in the fields of heavy industry and logistics, while a German investor would channel US$1.5 billion into a green production project using renewable energy. Elsewhere, approximately US$600 million would be invested by a Japanese company in order to produce medical equipment in Vietnam.

At the meeting, Gabor Fluit, chairman of the European Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam (EuroCham), pointed out that despite facing various obstacles, Vietnam remains a rising star in terms of business and investment.

He recommended that the government seek to introduce appropriate and competitive preferential policies aimed at attracting investment, especially ahead of the enforcement of the global minimum tax regulation which is slated to occur in 2024.

Furthermore, he underscored the need to harmonise administrative procedures and tax policies as a way of promoting trade growth within the framework of the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA).

Takeo Nakajima, chief representative of the Japan Trade and Promotion Organization (JETRO) Hanoi, affirmed that Japanese businesses are willing to invest further in the Vietnamese market. He cited a JETRO survey highlighting that 47% of questioned businesses are seeking to expand their operation over the next one or two years.

However, the JETRO representative pointed out that 66% of Japanese firms operating in Vietnam complained about the slowness in administrative procedures, while this figure in ASEAN stands at only 47%. He suggested that Vietnam eliminate unofficial fees, and handle administrative procedures both smoothly and transparently.

Hong Sun, chairman of the Korean Business Association in Vietnam (Kocham) speaks at the meeting. (Photo: VGP) 

Meanwhile, Hong Sun, chairman of the Korean Business Association in Vietnam (Kocham), revealed that the RoK Government and businesses view Vietnam as their best cooperation partner. He assessed that Korean investments in Vietnam are diverse, ranging from production and manufacturing to services, as well as from labour-intensive industries to high-tech industries.

Roughly 9,000 Korean enterprises have already invested in the Vietnamese market, employing a total of 700,000 local people.

Many Korean businesses operating in Vietnam, especially high-tech, financial, and energy firms, are considering increasing their investment capital and making new investments, providing that the local investment environment remains stable, he said.

Like Japanese investors, he said that Korean firms will feel safer in the country providing that the Government further simplifies administrative procedures and introduces fresh incentives.

Hong Sun also revealed that along with Samsung already investing US$20 billion in Vietnam, other Korean brands such as LG Electronics, LG Display, and LG Innotek are in the process of expanding investments in the country as a means of making it a global production base for automotive electrical circuits, electronic equipment, and home appliances.

To anticipate the investment wave, Minister Nguyen Chi Dung said that the Vietnamese side would introduce new investment support incentives amid the enforcement of the global minimum tax slated for 2024 to increase the competitiveness of the local investment environment and harmonise benefits of investors.

Central Highlands urged to “awaken” tourism potential

According to VOV, the Central Highlands region boasts huge potential for tourism development; however, the regional non-smoke industry has to date failed to unlock its potential and strengths.

Dray Sap waterfall in Dak Nong province. (Photo: 

The Central Highlands, which consists of Kon Tum, Gia Lai, Dak Lak, Dak Nong and Lam Dong provinces, is located in the area of the Vietnam-Laos-Cambodia border T-junction, and adjacent to the north central, south central coastal and southeast regions.

The region is endowed with many valuable resources for tourism development such as landscape along Dak Bla, Serepok, Krong Ana, Krong No, Dong Nai rivers; large and beautiful lakes such as Tuyen Lam, Dan Kia Suoi Vang (Lam Dong), Lak (Dak Lak), Bien Ho (Gia Lai), and hydroelectric lakes of Yaly and Dai Ninh, and such beautiful waterfalls as Dray Sap, Trinh Nu and Dieu Linh. It is also home to 47 ethnic minority groups with unique cultures.

Deputy Director General of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT) Ha Van Sieu said that the region is rich in natural resources and cultural identities, which are favourable conditions to develop community-based and experience tourism, such as tours to trade villages and explore ethnic minority’s cultures.

However, these types of tourism have not yet developed commensurately, Sieu noted.

To untie “bottlenecks” to meet tourism development requirements, Nguyen Duy Thuy, Director of the Institute of Social Sciences in the Central Highlands Region, said that region should look back on its investment attraction and infrastructure construction.

According to him, the region is lacking development connectivity between its localities, skilled human resources, and methodical programmes on tourism promotion to foreign countries.

Limited transport infrastructure and downgrading roads in the region are also hindering the non-smoke industry from development, Thuy stressed.

An elephant race in the Central Highlands. (Photo: 

He proposed Central Highlands provinces build a shared database, rearrange the destination network, increase investment in the sector, improve the quality of human resources, and step up promotion activities./.