(13/1/2020 – 20/1/2020) News Updates from Dutch Business Association in Vietnam


Working groups come up with solutions for economic growth in Vietnam Business Forum

The VBF is working with the government to achieve sustainable economic growth. Photo: Duc Thanh/VIR

In the last Vietnam Business Forum, the government has received many useful, straightforward recommendations from foreign investors. Especially, the most raised issues of this time are climate change and environment and how to deal with that in a sustainable manner. It is estimated that air pollution causes a yearly damage of 5% of the GDP. According to Nobufumi Miura – chairman of the Japanese Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Vietnam, that is why the Vietnamese government should set clear and standardized regulations on polluting industries.

Also, it has to build improved soft infrastructure (institutions that are essential for the economy) as well as hard infrastructure (physical objects like roads and railways) for innovation in an environment-friendly and sustainable way.

To read more about the Vietnam Business Forum, please visit this informative article of VIR: https://www.vir.com.vn/working-groups-thrash-out-solutions-for-economic-growth-73167.html

Air pollution forces Vietnam to cough up USD 13 billion a year

Haze over Hanoi’s iconic Long Bien Bridge at 11 a.m. on December 14, 2019. Photo by VnExpress/Giang Huy.

Vietnam is a suitable country to do business due to its booming economy, but the air pollution that has come with it is certainly not good for health of the citizens. Air pollution is a growing concern among Vietnamese and expats. The article states that in Vietnam around 50,000 people die each year directly linked to air pollution.

The main sources of pollution are fossil fuel from vehicles and contaminating industries, especially from FDI enterprises. Vietnam is now considered as one of the centers of FDI pollution.

To read more about the air pollution in Vietnam, check the article from VnExpress: https://e.vnexpress.net/news/news/air-pollution-forces-vietnam-to-cough-up-13-billion-a-year-4042039.html

ASEAN Chairmanship: For a cohesive and responsive ASEAN

Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Nguyen Quoc Dung speaks at the press conference on Vietnam’s ASEAN Chairmanship 2020. — VNA/VNS. Photo: Lam Khanh

This year, Vietnam becomes a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security as well as holding the hammer of ASEAN chairman. This poses Vietnam opportunities as well as challenges. The nation has chosen the theme “Cohesive and Responsive” for ASEAN Vietnam 2020 to highlight the vital role of solidarity and unity, which can be seen as the response to the growing separation and uncertainty over the world.  

The Vietnamese government has identified 5 key priorities in order to successfully operate the ASEAN Vietnam year, which are:

  • Advancing ASEAN’s active role and contribution to the maintenance of regional peace, security, and stability;
  • Promoting regional connectivity and integration, heighten ASEAN’s responsiveness and harness opportunities arising from the fourth Industrial Revolution;
  • Fostering the ASEAN sense of community and identity;
  • Advancing partnerships for peace and sustainable development with countries around the world;
  • Improving the responsiveness and operational effectiveness of ASEAN organs

To read more about 5 key priorities of Vietnam’s ASEAN Chairmanship year, check VIR: https://www.vir.com.vn/asean-chairmanship-for-a-cohesive-and-responsive-asean-73137.html

Live streaming on the rise in Vietnam

A streamer broadcasts himself playing a shooting game in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo by: Phan Thanh Nam/ VnExpress.

There are more and more professional “streamers” in the world, who livestream their online activities on channels such as Facebook, Twitch, or Youtube. The two most popular streaming jobs are broadcasting games and selling products. The rising popularity of game streaming is aligned with the global trend, the overall streaming time last year grew 210% to 356 million hours.

Commercial streaming is also gaining interest among Vietnamese shoppers. Many shop owners nowadays stream by themselves or hire other people to broadcast online. The streaming gains its popularity thanks to 3 advantages: First, businesses can sell their products with little cost compared to expensive e-commerce websites or target ads. Second, it takes little cost to begin, a streamer only needs a smartphone and good internet connections to do the job. Third, real-time interactions. People can ask questions by just typing a comment and receive constant response instead of having to wait hours or days for an inbox reply.

To read the full VnExpress article about the Live streaming industry, please kindly visit the link below: https://e.vnexpress.net/news/business/industries/live-streaming-becomes-a-growing-livelihood-in-vietnam-4034096.html

Is Saigon just another city, or is there something more?

Saigon at night. Photo: VnExpress

Working in Saigon, the most developed city in Vietnam, have you ever wondered: What are Saigon’s most special things? What keeps us stay here besides work?  

In this article, you will follow the writer in the journey of exploring Saigon with her foreign friend, encountered an unpleasant event. It made her realise the most unique thing about Saigon: The people.  Vietnamese southerners in this article are portraited as open-hearted, sincere, kind and also easygoing.

She pointed out that Saigon is developing at a rapid pace and becoming alike other Asian cities such as Singapore or Seoul with skyscrapers, steel buildings, and busy streets. The thing that makes Saigon distinguishable is its people with their unique characteristics. However, these local people are not included in any master plans for the tourism sector despite that they are an important resource for this industry.

Also, the writer raised her concern about the onslaught of modernity on the extraordinary traits of Saigonese. She concluded the article with a question: Can we, Saigonese, find a way to preserve and highlight these characteristics despite the uniformity of air-conditioners, concrete, glass and steel buildings?

Read the article of VnExpress at this link: https://e.vnexpress.net/news/perspectives/is-saigon-just-another-city-or-is-there-something-more-4026413.html

Internal Audit in Vietnam: What Investors Should Know About Decree 5 on Internal Audits?

Illustrative image by McCabe Ford Williams Chartered Accountants

The issued Decree 05/2019/ND-CP came into effect on 1 April 2019. The decree applies to authorities and organizations as well as companies and covers the topic of Internal Audit

Under the new Decree, companies need to create an Internal Audit (IA) committee, reporting to Board of Directors, or Board of Supervision and Board of Management. The IA committee has to have an appointed Head or Director.

Although the decree does not specify the job description of the Head of IA, companies should define the criteria for competence, expertise, and skills in line with the requirements of the business. However, some requirements for internal auditors include: independence, objectiveness, having no conflict of interest, having 3-5 years of experience, … If the IA department of the company does not meet the requirements, they can consider outsourcing or co-sourcing to a professional firm. 

For detailed information about the Decree, please visit the Vietnam Briefing article: https://www.vietnam-briefing.com/news/internal-audit-vietnam-what-investors-should-know-decree-5.html

Tet Traffic Congestion in HCMC and Hanoi

Chaos engulfs the intersection of Cao Thang and Vo Van Tan Streets in District 3. Photo by VnExpress

Going out becomes a nightmare for the people in megacities like Hanoi and HCMC. A week before Lunar New Year, almost every main route in HCMC and Hanoi is jam-packed with commuters and vehicles, crawling at a snail’s pace.

They are the people returning home, going shopping, transporting goods, which makes the streets vivid, active but also chaotic and congested. Many people find themselves stuck for a long time on a very short route, Quyen Trang, a resident said that she has to spend 30 minutes traveling on a 1km section. According to a security guard, normally traffic congestion only took place in the morning and evening, but these days, that became the normal state throughout the day. This problem makes people exhausted and urges them to stay at home during rush hour.

Read more about the Traffic congestion at the links: https://e.vnexpress.net/news/news/tet-preparations-stall-traffic-all-over-saigon-4044015.html and https://e.vnexpress.net/news/news/tet-crowds-worsen-traffic-congestion-in-hanoi-4043429.html