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Talks aim to keep Govt policies up with the times

Update: September, 27/2014 - 09:36
Vo Tri Thanh, deputy director of the CIEM (left) and economic expert Pham Chi Lan (centre) at the meeting in HCM City. — Photo bizlive

Quynh Hoa

HCM CITY (VNS)— With the theme, "New Games, New Moves", a conference of foreign and Vietnamese experts discussed strategies and solutions the country would need after the ASEAN Economic Community, the Tran-Pacific Partnership agreement and Viet Nam – EU FTA become official next year.

The new trade agreements and policies were expected to create a more liberatised and competitive market, speakers said at the third Viet Nam CEO Forum held in HCM City on Wednesday.

The AEC, for example, will also enhance Viet Nam's presence in the global production and value chain, and allow them to enjoy more benefits from regional trade and investment.

Herb Cochran, executive director of the American Chamber of Commerce, said that Vietnamese exports and GDP were expected to increase by 28 per cent and 36 per cent, respectively, compared to the pre-TPP period.

In the past seven years, Vietnamese exports to the US accounted for 20 per cent of total exports from ASEAN countries. The figure is expected to increase more than 30 per cent.

Vo Tri Thanh, deputy director of the Central Institute for Economic Management, said that "a new game requires new plays, new moves". Every country will develop its own policies to win this new game.

"Viet Nam has a great deal of potential and ambitions, but it also has limitations as well. What Viet Nam needs is a firm political will and strong leadership," he said.

The Government needs to have a new vision with reform policies on resource allocation, banking system, land and human resources to ensure a transparent, open business climate with fewer administrative procedures at a lower cost.

Viet Nam's policies should be consistent with commitments in their agreements and international laws, he added.

The forum attracted 1,000 domestic and foreign CEOs, business leaders and economists. During the conference, experts said that participation in the AEC and TPP would bring great benefits to the bloc's member countries, including faster economic growth, better job generation and additional foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows.

Another important factor would be investments in the IT industry, which will play a key role when it connects with the trading and production sectors.

IT investment is needed for better infrastructure and enhanced international integration.

Speaking at the conference, economist Pham Chi Lan said that small- and medium-sized enterprises in Viet Nam accounted for 98 per cent of total enterprises. To play in the game, with its new challenges, businesses should change their attitude and mindset. It requires them to promote creativity, reform and a start-up business spirit.

For the Government, she suggested that trade facilitation would also make Viet Nam become more confident to enter the new game.

Jonathan Hanh Nguyen, chairman of Imex Pan-Pacific Group, said: "Businesses need support from the Government. If they don't have it, they will swim in a big sea and sink."

He said the future success of businesses were dependent on the government's policies.

If businesses lack capital and do not have access to loans at preferential interest rates, they will have difficulties thriving in the new climate.

In addition, domestic businesses should build trademarks and develop marketing campaigns.

Truong Gia Binh, chairman of the FPT Corporation, said businesses should actively learn from their counterparts in other countries and adopt advanced technologies.

The Viet Nam CEO Forum was initiated by the HCM City Youth Business Association and co-organised by the Leading Business Club, the Saigon Entrepreneurs Club, the 2030 Businessmen Club and the Business Association of Viet Nam High-Quality Goods. — VNS

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