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Feb 19, 2024 / 16:36

Vietnam news in brief - February 19

Read the Hanoi Times for more updates about Vietnam.

Quang Tri gives green light to highway project

The Quang Tri Provincial People's Committee on February 18 granted a license to a consortium to prepare a feasibility report on the construction of National Highway 15D, which will link the country's spinal National Highway 1A with the Ho Chi Minh Road to the west. The consortium, consisting of Hoanh Son Group, Phonesack Vietnam and Nam Tien Ltd Co, will have three months to finalize the feasibility report.

The 92km National Highway 15D is the shortest route from My Thuy Port to the La Lay International Border Gate and from there to Laos and Thailand.

Quang Ninh Province to take measures to develop overnight boat fleets

A bird's-eye view of Bai Tu Long Bay in Quang Ninh Province. Photo: Quang Ninh Newspaper

The northern coastal province of Quang Ninh plans to build new overnight boats and develop high-end tourism products in Bai Tu Long Bay. According to local authorities, the move aims to prevent pollution of the bay's marine ecology.

The local authorities will launch several bids to select capable shipbuilders, ensuring the quality of the boats and limiting the number of sleeper boats spending the night at sea.

Vietnam sends most students abroad to Southeast Asia

Vietnam, Indonesia and Malaysia are the three largest senders of international students in Southeast Asia, with Vietnam leading the way, according to UNESCO statistics cited by international education consultancy Acumen. Some 132,000 Vietnamese students are studying abroad, while Malaysia and Indonesia each have more than 56,000 and Thailand has 32,000.

The top destinations for Vietnamese students abroad are Japan (more than 44,100) and South Korea (nearly 25,000). Vietnamese students also lead Southeast Asia in the US market, with over 23,100. Australia (over 14,100) and Canada (nearly 9,000) are also popular choices for Vietnamese students.

Positive signals for Vietnam's fruit and vegetable exports in early 2024

The estimated value of Vietnam's fruit and vegetable exports in January 2024 reached US$510 million, up 24.9% month-on-month and 112.1% compared to January 2023, according to the General Department of Customs. The value of fruit and vegetable exports in 2024 is expected to reach around $6 billion to $6.5 billion.

The main factors expected to drive the fruit and vegetable industry to achieve its target in 2024 include high demand in China - the largest export market- and Vietnam's ongoing negotiations with China to expand officially exported products to this market. Vietnam also continues to increase exports to key markets such as the US, EU, Australia and South Korea.

Seafood exports up over 60% in January

According to the General Department of Customs, seafood exports reached $730m in January 2024, an increase of 60.8% compared to the same period in 2023. However, seafood exports face many difficulties due to tensions in the Red Sea, leading to higher transportation costs.

In 2024, exports of shrimp, Vietnam's spearhead seafood product, are expected to increase by 10-15% compared to 2023, especially in the last six months of the year when inflationary pressures ease and importers' stock levels decrease, resulting in higher shrimp prices.

Beer companies in Vietnam see revenue drop by a fifth: BVSC

Beer companies in Vietnam saw their total revenue fall by about 18.2% year-on-year to VND45 trillion ($1.83 billion) in 2023, Bao Viet Securities JSC (BVSC) reported. Their net profit fell by more than 23% year-on-year to nearly VND5.1 trillion ($208 million). Saigon Beer Alcohol Beverage was the worst hit, with its revenue falling to VND30.7 trillion ($1.25 billion) in 2023 from VND35.2 trillion ($1.44 billion) a year earlier.

According to business insiders, the rapid decline in beer sales is the result of weaker purchasing power and tougher government policies to combat drunk driving and road accidents.