Black cloud still hovering over enterprises

February 04, 2013 | 14:37
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Many consumers and enterprises in Vietnam are still glum about 2013.

According to the “Consumer Confidence 2012-2013” survey released late last month by TNS Vietnam, Vietnamese consumers’ confidence index, with 100 being the optimal score, has dropped  to a score of 56, down from 68.

The score has slipped considerable from the optimism of 2010 and 2011, with respective scores of 79 and 78. In those days, an international survey found the Vietnamese to be the world’s most optimistic people.  

“The consumer confidence index has fallen in just six months, driven by consumer fears across most indices and due to poor Vietnamese economic performance,” said Ralf Matthaes, regional director of TNS Vietnam, which is part of the world’s largest custom research company TNS Global.

Specifically, the rate of those saying the value of the Vietnamese dong would worsen climbed from 5 per cent last year to 25 per cent this year. The rate of those predicting a “far worse” economy jumped from 5 per cent last year to 9 per cent.

Moreover, the rate of those believing their employment status would worsen doubled from 6 per cent in 2012 to 12 per cent in 2013. Also, the rate of those lamenting their living costs would be far worse grew from 4 per cent last year to 11 per cent this year.

Meanwhile, the rate of those saying their living costs would be little better reduced from 26 in 2012  to 18 in 2013.

Le Duc Khoi, Hanoi branch director of Indo-Trans Corporation, told VIR: “Like so many local companies, I am pessimistic about our company’s performance both in 2012 and 2013. It is because last year saw hikes in petroleum and transport fees, while transportation volume was low.”

“This year’s market will become more difficult than last year, due to continued increases in petroleum and other input costs. We will have to try our best to keep our revenue of $3 million in 2013 like in 2012.”

Bui Van Thieng, vice director of Saigon-Phu Tho Beer Joint Stock Company, shared the view. “I also feel not so optimistic about our performance this year. We have had to lower our revenue growth target for this year from 15 to 7 per cent due to unfavourable conditions in the market. Last year, our revenue totalled VND1 trillion ($48 million), up 15 per cent on-year.”

Bui Quy Dung, chief of Hanoi representative office of R.E.E Electric Appliances Joint Stock Company producing air conditioners, switchboards, air diffusers and chillers, said in 2012 R.E.E reached its revenue target, but its profit remained low.

“I am not upbeat about our company’s performance and Vietnam’s economic outlook this year. There is no sign for better outlook now. It would be very difficult for our company to reach set revenue and profit targets in 2013,” Dung said.

According to those businesses, they would feel less difficult only in 2014 when the nation’s economy could expectedly recover.

“It is because Vietnam’s three largest export markets of the US, EU and Japan are now in great difficulty and expected to recover by late next year,” Khoi said.

By Thanh Thu

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