Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has called on US businesses to invest in Vietnamese financial markets, pledging that the government will make the process as open as other countries in Southeast Asia.
Dung spoke at a meeting with US businesses on September 27 in New York, where he was leading a Vietnamese delegation to attend the 68th session of the United Nations General Assembly on September 26-28, the government website reported.
According to the PM, foreign investors are now allowed to own 30 percent of shares at financial and credit organizations, and the State Bank of Vietnam is considering increasing the rate.
In the meantime, Vietnam has already opened capital markets to foreign investment, with foreign institutional investors (FIIs) doing well in the stock market, Dung said.
He quoted the State Securities Commission of Vietnam as saying that the total investment value in the stock market has recently reached US$8 billion.
Vietnam is now home to branches of 40 banks with 100-percent foreign capital, he added.
“We pledge to open the financial markets on a par with regional countries. We are encouraging you to join Vietnam’s financial and money markets,” the PM was quoted as saying.
Additionally, Vietnam is encouraging foreign investment in the sectors of information and communication technology, energy, aviation, and banking, Dung said.
He stressed that Vietnam is reforming regulations so foreign business can make “transparent” investment into the country under international standards.
The country is also calling for investment into infrastructure, improving local human resources’ quality, restructuring public investment, and enhancing local agencies’ management capacity, he said.
On the other hand, Dung asked the US to not “discriminate” against Vietnamese goods, saying local produces that faced anti-dumping lawsuits were not worth much for US businesses, but they were related to the income of millions of poor farmers in Vietnam.
He also said that it was a “righteous decision” of US authorities to remove anti-dumping taxes from Vietnamese shrimp shipments recently, because the tax was unfair for Vietnam.
In a meeting with US Secretary of State John Kerry earlier that same day, Dung also called on the US to lower barriers to the countries’ trade relationships, and to recognize Vietnam as a “market-oriented economy” so that they can find solutions to problems in trade.
The US now ranks seventh out of 100 countries and territories with direct investment in Vietnam in terms of sum total.
Over the first seven months of this year the countries’ bilateral trade value was $17 billion, and is expected to reach $30 at this year's end, up 20 percent from last year.
During his stay in New York, Dung also met with UN General Secretary Ban Ki-moon and other officials with the UN, for talks on Vietnam’s development achievements, including some of the Millennium Development Goals that state members agreed to achieve by 2015.
Both Vietnamese and UN representatives pledged further and deeper cooperation in many sectors like peacekeeping and child care.
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