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HCMC to link up firms, banks to spur economy

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The demand for loans to restore production and meet the Tet (Lunar New Year) demand is enormous, experts said. VIET NAM NEWS

HCMC to link up firms, banks to spur economy

To speed up recovery post-Covid-19, Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) authorities are trying to link up businesses and banks to address the former’s financial needs.

The Vietnamese city’s Hoc Mon district has organised several conferences to find out the difficulties they face such as lack of capital and ways to put them in touch with lenders.

Nguyen Thanh Hai, director of Saigon Ngoc Diem Orchid Garden in Hoc Mon, said: “Foxtail orchids only blossom once a year, mainly during Tet [Lunar New Year] and many traders arrive in October and November every year to buy. But this year and last year tens of thousands of orchids went unsold. To maintain their orchid gardens, businesses need financial support.”

Nguyen Thi Phuoc, director of Lan Phuong Trading Production Co Ltd in Phu Nhuan district, said her company had to stop operating for many months because of social distancing but still had to pay taxes, interest on bank loans and salaries, and so is mired in difficulties.

Businesses said they want banks to restructure loans and provide new loans at low interest rates so that they could resume operations.

Business executives and experts said to resume operations companies desperately need funds.

As the end of the year approaches, businesses have been stepping up efforts to get back into the market as demand for goods and services surges in the holiday season.

Food producers need large sums of money soon to stockpile raw materials and make production plans for Christmas and Tet in early February, HCMC Food and Foodstuff Association president Ly Kim Chi said.

Deputy director of the Agriculture and Rural Development Bank’s Hoc Mon branch, Le Trung Hau, said the bank has a programme to reduce interest rates to help restore production and restructure old debts and not designate them bad debts.

Nguyen Van Than, director of the Joint Stock Commercial Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam’s Binh Thanh district branch, said the current demand for loans to revive and expand businesses is huge, and banks have cut interest rates and rolled over debts.

Banks said they plan to cut interest rates by one per cent and waive fees, and it has been well received by the business community.

The State Bank of Vietnam’s HCMC branch estimates 400,000 businesses will benefit from this.

VIET NAM NEWS/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

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