The governement of Vietnam, through its prime minister Nguyen Tan Dung, has granted permission to state-owned Vietnam National Shipping Lines (Vinalines) to sell its 80 % stake in Hai Phong Port and Saigon Port.
This announcement comes after a previous initial public offering (IPO) for the assets that failed to attract investors. At that time the government indicated that the state's ownership in Hai Phong Port should be between 65 and 75 per cent and between 50 and 65 per cent in Saigon Port.
Through Vinalines, the state currently owns a 95 percent stake in Hai Phong Port and a 65.4 percent stake in Saigon Port.
According to sources, Vingroup has already submit an offer to acquire an 80 percent stake in the two assets.
Hai Phong Port is a port group in Haiphong City, serving Northern Vietnam and future Kunming-Lao Cai-Hanoi-Haiphong Corridor. This is the leading seaport for northern Vietnam. This port system is under planning to handle ships up to 30,000-40,000 DWT.
Saigon Port is a network of ports in Ho Chi Minh City. In 2013, it was the 24th busiest container port in the world. The port network is the hub for export-import of goods in south Vietnam, the economic hub of the nation, which accounts for more than two-thirds of Vietnam's economy.