[Round-up] PVN Pulls Request for U.S. Loan to Build Coal-Fired Power Plant, Startups Receive $291 Million Funding

Tuan Minh
BizLIVE - State-owned energy firm PetroVietnam is no longer seeking American financial support to build a coal-fired power plant in Vietnam. Vietnamese startups raised $290 million in 2017, 42% higher than $205 million last year.
[Round-up] PVN Pulls Request for U.S. Loan to Build Coal-Fired Power Plant, Startups Receive $291 Million Funding
A coal-fired power plant in Vietnam.
State Capital Manager Urged to Root out Corruption
The committee for management of state capital at enterprises must join hands with relevant agencies to chalk out concrete measures to prevent corruption, losses and waste, said Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc on February 12 when he handed out a decision to appoint Nguyen Hoang Anh, former Secretary of Cao Bang province Party Committee, to the post of the committee’s chairman.
He laid stress on the committee’s two key long term tasks, which are bolstering equitization and divestment of state capital and improving capacity and efficiency of state-owned enterprises, especially large corporations.
State Budget Revenue in January up 5.2% y/y
Total revenue of Vietnam’s state budget in January was estimated at 114.2 trillion dong ($5 billion), equivalent to 8.7% of the year’s estimate and up 5.2% from the same period last year, according to the finance ministry.  
Domestic revenue, estimated at 95.5 trillion dong, down 1.4% from the same period last year.
FDI Enterprises Pay Lowest Taxes despite High Profits
Foreign-invested enterprises, which have enjoyed multiple tax incentives, contribute the least to Vietnam’s state coffers despite reporting high profits, according to the latest report by the General Statistics Office.
FDI enterprises have achieved the highest profit growth among the economic sectors, generating 327.4 trillion dong ($14.4 billion) in pre-tax profits in 2016, an increase of 17.3% on average in the 2010-2016 period. However, they paid the lowest taxes to the state budget, amounting to only 250.9 trillion dong in 2016.
Vietnamese Startups Receive $291 Million Funding in 2017
Vietnamese startups raised $290 million in 2017, 42% higher than $205 million last year, on the back of a couple of bigger ticket-sized deals including investments into gourmet media platform Foody Corporation and e-commerce player Tiki, according to data collated by Hanoi-based edtech group and accelerator Topica Founder Institute.
The volume of transactions also doubled to 92 from 50 of 2016, according to the report. Notably, funding into Vietnamese gourmet media platform Foody Corporation and e-commerce player Tiki accounted for nearly half of the total value at $118 million.
PetroVietnam Pulls Request for U.S. Help to Build a Coal-Fired Power Plant
A Vietnamese company is no longer seeking American financial support to build a coal-fired power plant in Vietnam, bringing to an abrupt end a closely watched test of whether Washington would back international projects that could potentially contribute to climate change, New York Times reported.
On Thursday, the Export-Import Bank of the United States, a lender run by the American government, said the Vietnamese state-controlled company, PetroVietnam, had withdrawn its application for financial support.
Textile Exports to China Growing
Though Vietnam remains a big importer of textile feedstock and accessories from China, its rising exports to China is a promising sign, according to the Vietnam National Textile and Garment Group.
Customs data shows imports from China in 2017 were high at $9 billion, or 42.7% of all textile-related imports, and 12% higher than in 2016.
Vietnam’s Improved Investment Climate Attracts Japanese Firms
Vietnam becomes an attractive destination for Japanese investors as the country’s investment climate has been improved in recent years, said an economist from Waseda University, Japan.
Prof. Tran Van Tho, who is also member of the Economic Advisory Group for Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, said similarities in culture between the two countries also help promote their economic cooperation.
Vietnam Protests Saudi Arabia’s Seafood Import Ban
Vietnam has sent a diplomatic note to oppose a seafood import suspension imposed recently by Saudi Arabia, calling on the country to withdraw its decision.
Vietnam’s vice minister of agriculture, Vu Van Tam, delivered the ministry’s diplomatic note to Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to Vietnam, Dakhil Al Johani, in a meeting in Hanoi on 7 February, the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) said in a statement.
Foreign traders bought in shares of FLC Faros Company (coded ROS) on January 12 when they turned net sellers on the Vietnamese stock market for a second day running.
They net purchased 537,000 shares of ROS worth 79.44 billion dong ($3.5 million) on Monday, making ROS the most wanted stock. Since the start of this year, foreigners net bought 1.9 million shares valued at 365 billion dong of the construction company.
Singapore-based security solutions provider Ademco Security Group has announced its acquisition of a majority stake of Vietnamese security firm, part of a plan to boost its overseas revenue by 50% over the next three years, Singaporean media reported.
In partnership with International Enterprise (IE) Singapore, Ademco took over a 60% stake in TNT Technologies Joint Stock Company (TNT), a high-end integrated security solutions provider. TNT's existing owners will hold the remaining 40%.
Four ambassadors from Canada, New Zealand, Switzerland, and Norway visited the iconic Temple of Literature in Hanoi ahead of the Tet holiday, from where they expressed wishes of prosperity and peace for the Vietnamese people, especially hard-working Vietnamese women.
Foreign players net purchased 4.415 trillion ($194.5 million) worth of Vietnamese listed shares last week despite a market crash, bringing the year-to-date value to 13.378 trillion dong ($589.3 million), according to exchange data.