Vietnam plans F1 race in Hanoi to rev up tourism

By BLOOMBERG

HANOI • Vietnam plans to host a Formula One (F1) race in 2020 in Hanoi as the government steps up efforts to boost tourism to be a major economic driver.

The April 2020 event will be a 5.57km street circuit, according to a statement issued by F1. Vingroup JSC signed a multi-year deal to host the Grand Prix, said the statement, which was issued by Vingroup.

Vietnamese officials want to lure more overseas visitors to reduce the nation’s reliance on exports to power growth.

Tourists are forecast to increase 30% to as many as 16 million in 2018, and the industry is expected to account for 8% of GDP this year and 10% by 2020.

Vingroup is forming a new unit, Vietnam Grand Prix Co, with a registered capital of one trillion dong (RM178.62 million), to host the event, the Tri Thuc Tre news website reported, citing information from the Hanoi People’s Committee. The unit will be a subsidiary of Vingroup’s auto manufacturing group, Vin- Fast, the news website said.

“Vingroup wants to bring this race to Vietnam because of the general benefits to the society such as more jobs will be created, the infrastructure of Hanoi will be upgraded and other bigger worldwide events will be encouraged to take place in Vietnam,” Vingroup CEO and vice chairman Nguyen Viet Quang said in the statement.

Singapore, which draws millions of television viewers around the world for the F1 Grand Prix, extended its contract for the event to 2021 last year.