|Le Huu Minh Quan of Nielsen said the retail market has potential in the long run, adding that modern trade channels would develop well in coming years. — VNA/VNS Photo
HCM CITY (VNS) — Besides efforts made by enterprises to improve their competitiveness, the Government must develop new policies to assist local retailers in an increasingly competitive business environment, heard a seminar in HCM City on Wednesday.
"International integration creates many business opportunities, and we can utilise these opportunities or not depending on our internal restructuring," said Nguyen Dinh Cung, director of the Central Institute for Economic Management (CIEM).
He said that enterprises must focus more on improving competitiveness.
Phan The Rue, former chairman of the Viet Nam Retailers Association, said that government agencies, businesses and consumers must take action now.
"I think Vietnamese businesses should focus on building infrastructure and training human resources. They need to re-organise the retail system, especially to meet the needs of competitiveness in the global economy, " Rue said.
Enterprises said they expected the government to create a favourable business environment and more equality between domestic and foreign enterprises.
Vu Kim Hanh, chairwoman of the Business Association of Vietnamese High Quality Products, said under the country's WTO commitments, expansion plans of foreign retailers were subject to the Economic Needs Test (ENT), which limits foreign access to domestic markets.
However, several provincial authorities have granted licenses to open new retail outlets without paying attention to ENT, she said.
She said the Government should focus on the vital role of consumption in the value chain, because, without it, manufacturing could not develop.
In addition, trade fraud should also be strictly dealt with to protect the rights of authentic manufacturers and distributors, she added.
State agencies should also conduct better research, and inform businesses of international regulations in a timely manner.
Support policies offered by ASEAN members to their local retailers should be studied as well, she said.
With the current economic situation, the retail market will not obtain higher growth as in previous years, according to Cung.
However, Le Huu Minh Quan of Nielsen said the retail market has potential in the long run, adding that modern trade channels would develop well in coming years.
More attention should be paid to the lucrative rural market, he said.
The seminar was organised by the Business Association of Vietnamese High Quality Products, the Central Institute for Economic Management, the Leading Businesses Club and the Young Businesspeople Association. — VNS