AB InBev's Australian unit keen on Sabeco, Habeco stakes - Vietnam

HANOI, July 25 (Reuters) - Vietnam said Australia's Carlton & United Breweries (CUB), part of the world's largest brewer Anheuser-Busch InBev, has expressed its interest in becoming a strategic investor of Vietnam's top brewers Sabeco and Habeco.

CUB's general director has conveyed the interest to Vietnam's Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue during their meeting in Sydney on Monday, according to a statement on the government's website (www.chinhphu.vn).

CUB was not immediately reachable for comment.

AB InBev has been reported in the media as being among international brewers interested in buying shares of Vietnam's state-controlled Sabeco and Habeco.

Vietnam has one of the world's most attractive beer markets and one of the biggest in Southeast Asia, thanks to a young population that consumed nearly 4 billion liters in 2016. Several foreign brewers - from Kirin to Heineken - have been eyeing Sabeco since it was earmarked for privatization. (Reporting by My Pham; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman)