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Foreign investors expected to own 35 per cent of stake in petrol and oil firms

The Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) has proposed the Government to allow petrol and oil businesses to transfer stakes to foreign investors, but not exceeding 35 per cent.

The proposal is part of the draft revision and supplement of several articles in the Government’s Decision No 83/2014/NĐ-CP on petrol and oil trading, creating favourable condition for foreign investors to participate in petrol and oil distribution in Việt Nam.

In a report submitted to the Government, the MoIT said petroleum is a strategic commodity, greatly affecting people’s living and energy security, so it has calculated carefully the appropriate time to allow foreign investors to take part in the local distribution network.

When Việt Nam joined the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 2007, petroleum was a field that the country did not commit to opening up so that domestic enterprises had the opportunity to grow, build facilities and keep an important position in the domestic petroleum distribution system.

“Today, after 13 years, Việt Nam has opened its doors to foreign investors to invest in most important areas such as electricity, oil and gas, and aviation,” the MoIT said in the report.

The ministry said the Prime Minister has just approved the participation of foreign investors in a number of large State-owned enterprises, including PetroVietnam Oil Corporation with 35 per cent and Vietnam National Petroleum Group with 20 per cent. This participation has significantly contributed to improving corporate governance, raising efficiency and competitiveness.

The ministry said that the foreign investors’ participation is expected to help domestic enterprises attract capital, technology and business management skills. – VNS

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