Bureau Chief, Vietnam
John's Feed
Feb 2, 2012

Southeast Asia goes slow on nuclear, despite energy shortage

HANOI (Reuters) – After the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster, Vietnam suspended its nuclear plans and waited for more than a decade before reviving them.

But Vietnam was undeterred by last year’s Fukushima nuclear meltdown in Japan, the world’s worst atomic accident since Chernobyl, and is racing ahead with plans to start construction of its first reactor in 2014, which should go online six years later.

Nov 14, 2011

Vietnam, wracked by economic woes, plans new reforms

HANOI (Reuters) – After four years of economic instability, Vietnam is embarking on reforms some believe could be its most significant since steps started in 1986 that ended stifling central planning and, eventually, turned the war-torn country into a tiger.

However, there’s substantial skepticism that policymakers can fend off resistance to major change from state-owned companies and other interest groups, including private conglomerates, whose influence has surged.

Sep 7, 2011

Analysis: Vietnam taps reserves but dong still likely to slide

HANOI (Reuters) – The Vietnamese dong looks stuck for now with the unappealing title of Asia’s worst performing currency, despite moves by the central bank to dip into foreign reserves to bolster it.

The dong’s chronic weakness has repelled foreign investors and hampered attempts by Vietnam’s policymakers to reverse the faltering fortunes of an economy that only five years ago was one of Asia’s most promising.

Sep 6, 2011

Vietnam cbank intervenes to support dong -sources

HANOI, Sept 6 (Reuters) – Vietnam’s central bank has been
selling U.S. dollars to banks in recent weeks to support the
weak dong , which has come under pressure since early
August following months of stability, market sources said.

The State Bank of Vietnam (SBV) has sold an estimated $1.5
billion to five or six large state-run and partly-private banks
since mid-August, two sources who closely follow the Vietnamese
currency market estimated.

Aug 26, 2011

Vietnam should hold rates for now, have ‘flexible’ monetary policy -govt

HANOI, Aug 26 (Reuters) – Vietnam’s central bank should hold
policy rates for now and deploy monetary tools “flexibly” the
rest of 2011 to trim price pressures, but it needs to try to
lower interest rates as inflation eases, Deputy Prime Minister
Vu Van Ninh said.

His views were reported on official websites on Friday, the
day after Ninh met senior central bank officials and two days
after the government announced that annual inflation hit 23
percent in August.

Aug 25, 2011

Analysis: Vietnam inflation may have peaked; now the hard part

HANOI (Reuters) – Inflation may have finally peaked in Vietnam. Now comes the hard part for policymakers.

It is too early to start unwinding tight monetary policy but pressure to do so will no doubt rise quickly if, as some economists expect, inflation starts to ease in the next month or so.

Aug 23, 2011

Vietnam newspapers – Aug 23

HANOI, Aug 23 (Reuters) – These are some of the leading
stories in the official Vietnamese press on Tuesday .
Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for
their accuracy.



— Ho Chi Minh City’s consumer price index in August rose
0.68 percent from July, the lowest level since the beginning of
the year, the city’s statistics department said.

Aug 8, 2011

Asia ministers to try to deepen trade as West falters

HANOI (Reuters) – Asian trade officials will try to tighten the ties that bind their economies when they meet in Indonesia this week in the face of falling demand and quickly fading confidence in developed world economies, exacerbated by the U.S. downgrade.

Officials from the 10 members of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) are expected to try to advance plans to form an ASEAN Economic Community by 2015, and for further integration beyond that date, at the meeting on the tropical island of Sulawesi.

Aug 7, 2011

New Hanoi anti-China rally tests tolerance of protests

HANOI (Reuters) – Anti-China demonstrators staged another in a series of weekly marches in central Hanoi on Sunday, testing authorities’ tolerance of protests on an emotive issue in Vietnamese society.

Up to 200 people singing patriotic songs, carrying banners and flags and chanting slogans drew stares from bemused tourists and honks of approval from motorists as they filed around Hoan Kiem Lake.

Aug 3, 2011

Vietnam parliament approves cabinet that strengthens PM

HANOI (Reuters) – Vietnam’s parliament approved a new cabinet on Wednesday that is likely to enhance the prime minister’s power and may streamline policy-making during a rough patch for the economy but points largely to continuity in the coming five years.

Analysts see all four deputy prime ministers as supporters of Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung, bolstering his control over the $100 billion (61 billion pounds) economy, which is struggling with high inflation, trade and budget deficits and a volatile currency.