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SE Asia

Vietnam PM set to approve bigger foreign stakes in some listed firms

Published on Dec 31, 2013 11:50 AM

HANOI (REUTERS) - Vietnam's prime minister is expected within days to approve an amended law allowing foreigners to own up to 60 percent of shares in some listed firms, the latest incremental move towards easing tight state controls on the economy.

The draft, seen by Reuters, would increase the foreign ownership limit and voting rights from 49 percent to 60 percent, but only in certain sectors and companies, and after approval of shareholders and Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung himself.

The proposal also increases the foreign voting rights percentage in unlisted companies to 49 percent, to match the current 49 percent foreign shareholding limit.

Investors have welcomed the idea as a positive step towards bringing more capital into Vietnam's two bourses, but say the law needs to be loosened further if the country is serious about attracting investment and boosting the performance of its companies.

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