State Bank of Vietnam

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State Bank of Vietnam
Founded 1951
Headquarters Hanoi, Vietnam
Key People Governor Nguyen Van Giau

The State Bank of Vietnam (SBV) is the central bank charged with oversight of the official currency, the Vietnamese dong. Launched under communist rule shortly after World War II, the SBV has been modernizing its operations in line with other global central banks for more than 20 years and is currently loosening control over the dong's exchange rate with the U.S. dollar.


The State Bank of Vietnam was established in 1951 as the Vietnam National Bank under communist leader Ho Chi Minh, after whom the present-day HoChiMinh Stock Exchange is named. The Hanoi-based SBV was later unified with the South's central banking system in 1978 concurrently with the introduction of a new, unified Vietnamese dong.[1] Beginning in 1986 the Vietnamese government began modernizing the SBV as part of its new policy of "doi moi", or financial openness, by removing commercial credit responsibilities from SBV's core functions in state monetary policy.

In September 2008 the SBV caused a stir by licensing - for the first time in Vietnam - two foreign banks that are wholly foreign-owned: HSBC, to be based in Hanoi, and Standard Chartered Bank based in Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon).[2] The SBV also slashed interest rates in line with most other global market economies in respomse to the financial crisis of fall 2008.[3]

Key People[edit]

State Bank of Vietnam Governor Nguyen Van Giau was appointed in 2007 after a 4-year stint as Party Secretary and Deputy Party Secretary of Ninh Thuan Province. He had earlier been deputy governor of the SBV from 1998 to 2003 after a 10-year career in commercial banking with state-owned Agribank.[4]

Latest news[edit]

The SBV recently ordered Vietnam's commercial banks to purchase dollar-denominated bonds the central bank intends issuing during 2009 to cover a state shortage of foreign exchange.[5] In March, 2009 the SBV also widened the trading band of the dong relative to the U.S. dollar from +/-3% to +/-5% in response to the same problem.[6]