ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
Vietnam:Lending figures on August 20 showed a growth of 5.4 per cent since last December, while non-performing loans and lagging demand continued to blight the nation's economy, according to data from the General Statistics Office (GSO).
The results showed only a minor increase on July data released by the State Bank of Viet Nam, which indicated a 5.3 per cent surge since the end of last year.
Despite low growth in lending, total deposits and total money supply remained consistent with previous years. Deposits surged 9.48 per cent while official money supply rose 8.35 per cent, according to the GSO.
The 8-month figure is less than half of the 12 per cent growth target for 2013.
The director of the Central Bank's Monetary Policy Department, Nguyen Thi Hong, last week said the target would likely be achievable as lending often grew strongly at the end of the year.
In order to meet the 12 per cent growth target, lending will need to increase 1.3 per cent every month until the end of 2013, she added.
Hong said the central bank would see the boost of lending as one of its key priorities for 2013. The central bank is currently developing measures to lend the VND30 trillion housing support package.
Hong also called on the participation of other relevant ministries and bodies to boost lending and consumption.
Measures on credit guarantee will also be developed to help businesses access credit, Hong said.
Market insiders said lending rates had not prevented firms from accessing loans; noting that rates had been cut by up to 4 per cent to a 9-10 per cent annual rate for short-term loans.
Many enterprises with healthy credit ratings have also been able to secure interest rates at around 7 per cent.
The central bank is also finalising the legal framework to settle non-performing loans in Viet Nam's sector.
According to the latest data from SBV, non-performing loans have decreased for the second consecutive month to 4.46 per cent of total credits, down 19 per cent from May this year.
Bad debts increased continuously in the first four months of the year, up from 4.08 per cent late last year.
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