Tax concessions for Vietnam shipbuilder Vinashin

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Vietnam has granted tax concessions to nearly-bankrupt shipbuilder Vinashin, a newspaper reported on Wednesday.

Among the concessions, the state-owned firm will get a grace period until December 31, 2011 for paying its taxes, Tuoi Tre reported, citing the Ministry of Finance.

The one-year delay coincides with a 12-month deferral Vinashin had reportedly sought for repayment of its international debts.

Vinashin was due to pay on December 20 the initial US$60 million installment on a $600 million loan arranged by Credit Suisse in 2007.

Company chairman Nguyen Ngoc Su was quoted in official media on Monday as saying the firm had no way to immediately make the payment and was "still waiting for the final answer" on its deferral request.

Vinashin expects to secure capital to repay creditors through a restructuring of the group, but this takes times, Su said.

Vinashin officials and creditors have refused comment to AFP.

The government has said Vinashin must settle its own debts which total at least VND86 trillion ($4.4 billion dollars).

The Tuoi Tre report listed four separate tax concession measures, including a deferral of taxes on imported equipment, and the general one-year grace period.

Global ratings agency Moody's last week downgraded Vietnam's government bond rating to B1 an undesirable investment from Ba3 because of Vinashin's debts, as well as other economic factors.

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