Private-equity investors optimistic about Vietnam economy: survey

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Positive sentiments towards the Vietnamese economy have risen to their highest level in the last two years, a survey by accounting and consulting firm Grant Thornton has found.

While the positive outlook was at 43 percent in the 10th bi-annual Private Equity report, those with a negative outlook decreased significantly to 13 percent of respondents, indicating confidence is returning among PE investors.

The survey polled "a number of decision makers based in Vietnam or those having a significant focus on Vietnam," to find out about sentiments towards the private equity sector in Vietnam over the next 12 months.

A press release from the company said: "46 percent of the respondents agreed that they will increase their investment allocation to Vietnam whereas 44 percent of them will keep their proportion stable."

Corruption continued to be the most critical obstacle for PE investors, with 88 percent of the respondents citing it.

In second place with a 76 percent vote was government red tape/processes.

Though the food and beverage sector was added for just the first time in the survey, it was chosen the most attractive industry to invest.

There was a significant increase in investors' confidence in the financial services sector as it rose to second from seventh position in the last survey.

Education and real estate/property ranked equal second with 28 percent of respondents each.

About 38 percent of respondents said the cost of debt would stay stable in the coming year.

Only 27 percent thought it would decrease, a significant fall from 77 percent in the previous survey.

Asked about important factors causing failure or success of deals, 59 percent opted for "local presence." 

Difference in valuation expectations was again named the number one deal killer, with an overwhelming 89 percent choosing it, an increase of 22 percent.

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