Great Expectations for 2018

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Vietnam Outlook for 2018

We wish you a wonderful New Year full of opportunities and high energy in your business and personal life. Some good things to look forward to in 2018 are:

Companies investing in workforce training and education

A recent report from global auditing firm PwC reports that 92 percent of Vietnamese CEO’s are confident in growth for their business over the next 12 months. Vietnam is expected to rank first in the top ten APEC destinations to receive a net increase in cross-border investment over the next 12 months, slightly ahead of China, Indonesia and the United States.

According to PwC, building a workforce fit for the future is one of the biggest concerns for Vietnam CEO’s. They recognize the importance of adapting to the digital age and are working to lead the transformation of the workforce. Companies are investing in automation and forms of artificial intelligence such as machine learning. These actions point to a future workforce that is more analytical, more intelligence-consuming, and less focused on the commoditized task.

“We have to train the labor force to adapt to and use new technologies. We need to build a thorough plan and prepare the necessary talent to execute new business ideas and adapt to Industry 4.0. This is one of our big concerns. We see a need to recruit the right talent and act fast. Preparing the human factor is always key,” said Truong Thi Le Khanh, Chairperson of Vinh Hoan Corporation.

CEOs in Vietnam believe that more can be done to help all workers in APEC economies adapt to the era of greater automation and jobs rebalancing. Findings reveal Vietnamese CEOs rate greater investment by business in continuous learning and increasing business investment in education systems as the most effective ways to accelerate digital workforce readiness. This is followed by expanding public-private initiatives in workforce training.

“Vietnam has got a great workforce. We have got a young population, but it should not end up becoming a manufacturing place for only low-value items or mass items. It should upgrade the skills of its workforce to also become the manufacturer of very high-end items,” said Uday Shankar Sinha, CEO & General Director, Suntory PepsiCo Vietnam Beverage.

More Travel
In 2017 Vietnam recorded 13 million foreign tourists, an increase of 28 percent from 2016. This year is expected to be an even busier tourism year. If you haven’t been to this amazing country yet, read our 7 Stunning Reasons to Visit Vietnam

Quang Ninh province, home to Ha Long Bay will host the National Tourism Year 2018 Festival, where over 100 events are scheduled to be held throughout 2018. The festival will offer a series of cultural, sports and tourism programs for all ages. Highlights include a spectacular opening ceremony in Ha Long City “Carnaval Ha Long 2018” on April 28th. The fun will continue through the year with closing ceremonies in January 2019 to escort in the opening of the ASEAN Tourism Forum 2019 and the very popular annual Ha Long FLC Open Golf Tournament.

Switzerland’s leisure airline Edelweiss will begin offering direct flights in November 2018 from Zurich to Ho Chi Minh City, increasing the number of European tourists to Vietnam. Bernd Bauer, CEO of Edelweiss, said that the airline hopes to carry about 10,500 passengers to Ho Chi Minh City a year, bringing revenue of US$32 million. “Vietnam is a well-known tourist destination with many recreational activities that is becoming more popular to Swiss tourists. Visitors from Switzerland often have longer duration of stay and higher expenditure than those from other countries,” Bernd said.

Best time ever to buy a car in Vietnam

Zero import taxes on cars and auto parts mean buyers can save thousands of dollars on vehicles this year. The price of cars and trucks in Vietnam’s automobile market has been positively affected by a robust series of new tax policies put into effect on January 1, 2018. In particular, automobile import tax from ASEAN countries into Vietnam and import tax on automobile parts officially dropped to zero. General Motors Vietnam, Toyota Vietnam, Nissan and Ford Vietnam have all joined the race of offering automobile discounts. Kia and Mazda vehicles assembled and distributed domestically by THACO will be also reduced as the special consumption tax on 2.0Litre engine cars declines by five percent.

Impact Investing

Impacting others in a positive way with your dollars is a powerful gift. Several non-profits are doing amazing work in Vietnam. We hope you will take the time to follow the links below to learn about a few of them. If their mission resonates with you, we certainly hope your generosity will be a resource to them and their continual mission. Giving to causes you personally care about is one of the best ways to make an impact in our world.

Sao Bien:Room for Education

Little Rose, Warm Shelter

Seam the World

Kianh Foundation: The Mulligan Project

Newborns Vietnam

The Winter Olympics
The XXIII Olympic Winter Games will take place in PyeongChang, South Korea February 9th-25th, 2018. The games are always an exhilarating thing to see as the athletes compete for the thrill of victory or the agony of defeat.

Team Vietnam tryout athletes are:

Nguyen Thai Binh – Snowboarding
Trinh Dinh Thoi – Snowboarding
Pham Tien Dat – Alpine Skiing
Nguyen Van An – Alpine Skiing Nguyen
Vo Huu Vinh – Alpine Skiing
Nguyen Duc Manh – Cross Country

Total Lunar Eclipse on Jan. 31st

2018 started off with a beautiful full moon and we will see a second full moon on January 31st at 5:51 a.m. EST. Scientifically, a total lunar eclipse, also termed as a blood moon, turns the moon a vibrant crimson when the Earth aligns perfectly between the sun and the moon causing Earth’s shadow to block the sun. The atmosphere then bends the light to create the unique visual effect giving off a deep reddish hue. “We’re seeing all of the Earth’s sunrises and sunsets at that moment reflected from the surface of the Moon,” explains Sarah Noble, a Program Scientist at NASA.

TET 2018 – Year of the Dog

Vietnam’s most important holiday will be celebrated from February 15th-20th. TET marks the beginning of Spring and in the Vietnamese culture represents a most revered time of life upon the new lunar year. This is a time of fresh, new beginnings and deep introspection. It is customary to be at your very best going into Tet and letting the past go. People will get a haircut, buy new clothes, tidy up their homes, visit family and old friends, settle grievances and debts, and stock up on Tet specialty foods. It is a joyous and solemn holiday of remembering family ancestors while also appreciating and acknowledging the present. It is customary to give thanks for of all one has and extend good wishes to those who have helped throughout the previous year. Most Vietnamese also hold a little extra hope in their hearts for a year of good fortune, health and happiness. The Eve of Tet is thought to have a powerful effect of setting the stage for the tone and temperament of the upcoming year in business and family life.

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