HA NOI — The first-ever Vietnamese-Latin American forum on trade and investment will be held in the capital on July 5-6, the Foreign Ministry has announced.
The event, with the theme of "Viet Nam-Latin America: Trade and Investment Partners for Development", aimed to enhance friendship and understanding among locals from either side, the ministry said.
It would be a valuable chance for authorities as well as Vietnamese and Latin American business communities to discuss co-operation potential, seek effective measures to solve challenges and draw up a new page in trade and investment ties, it added.
During a press conference on Thursday, Deputy Foreign Minister Nguyen Phuong Nga said Viet Nam always paid great attention to developing comprehensive co-operation with Latin American countries.
She described the forum as a good opportunity for potential partners to meet, exchange information and seek new co-operation opportunities.
To date, 16 Latin American countries have confirmed they would be sending delegations to the event while more than 200 Vietnamese and Latin American businesses have registered to participate.
As scheduled, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung will attend the event and deliver an opening speech.
A general discussion and three seminars will be held after the opening session, focusing on business and investment, the environment, transportation, logistics, telecommunications, agriculture and energy.
With a GDP of more than US$5.5 trillion and a population of 580 million, Latin America represents great investment opportunities for Vietnamese companies.
Two-way trade between Viet Nam and Latin America has increased significantly over past years and is now 17 times higher than it was 10 years ago, from $300 million in 2000 to $5.1 billion in 2011.
Viet Nam's main exports to Latin American countries include rice, textiles, seafood, rubber and coffee. It imports animal feed, raw materials for textiles and garments, steel, chemicals and medicine.
To date, Vietnamese firms have pledged to invest $7 billion in the region while Latin American countries plan to invest $3 billion in Viet Nam. — VNS