Weekly News Bulletin - No. 01, October 2023

Vietnam's GDP growth will reach 6% at most this year despite efforts to resolve business and production difficulties, announced the Ministry of Planning and Investment at a government meeting Saturday.

The lowest prospect mentioned would see GDP growth at 5% for the entire year. In this case, GDP in the last quarter would have to reach 7%, according to ministry analysts. The middle of the road scenario would see GDP round out the year at 5.5%, in which case final quarter GDP growth would need to reach 8.8%. The most optimistic scenario would be GDP growth ending the year at 6%, but in order for that to happen, GDP growth in the fourth quarter must reach 10.6%. This would be a challenge, according to the ministry, as GDP growth in the third quarter reached only 5.33%.

Singapore's sovereign wealth fund GIC is among investors vying to buy up to 20% stake in grocer Bach Hoa Xanh from Vietnam's retail giant Mobile World Investment. The deal could value the grocery chain at up to 1.7 billion USD, according to Reuters. Mobile World said it would announce the information once the deal was concluded. One of the world's biggest investors, GIC has stakes in Vietnamese conglomerate Vingroup's medical unit, Vinmec and major lender Vietcombank among other investments in the country.

Last week highlight

Hanoi recorded nearly 2.53 billion USD in foreign direct investment (FDI) registered during the first nine months of 2023, maintaining its top position in FDI attraction in Vietnam, said the Foreign Investment Agency (FIA) under the Ministry of Planning and Investment. The northern city of Hai Phong came second with nearly 2.21 billion USD, equivalent to 10.9% of the total and up 82.4% from a year earlier. It was followed by Ho Chi Minh City, Bac Giang province, and Binh Duong province.

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Let’s look at some other key financial and business headlines during the past week

1.       GDP growth 6% max this year, ministry predicts

2.       Singapore's GIC among bidders vying for stake in Vietnam's third largest grocery chain

3.       Vietnam eyes $10bn trade with Brazil by 2025

4.       Southern localities a magnet for Japanese investors

5.       Vietnam’s economy remains resilient amid weakening global demand

6.       Dong Nai enjoys trade surplus of 4.3 billion USD in nine months

7.       HCMC economy grows 4.57% in 9 months

8.       Up to 116,300 enterprises established in nine months: GSO

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