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Local firms encouraged to expand trade in Cambodia

Update: March, 16/2015 - 09:22

Vietnamese goods do have a market in Cambodia, and many Cambodian consumers are fond of products made by companies like ABC Bakery, Vissan, and Saigon Cosmetics. — Photo thesaigontimes

HCM CITY (VNS) — Vietnamese firms should focus more on promoting their products in Cambodia, the Investment and Trade Promotion Centre of HCM City (ITPC) has said.

Viet Nam enjoys a trade surplus with Cambodia, but its exports to that country dropped by 8.7 per cent last year to US$2.66 billion, according to Nguyen Tuan, ITPC's deputy director.

Political instability, cumbersome administrative procedures and fraud are among the reasons Vietnamese firms are unsure about making long-term investments in the neighbouring nation.

The fierce competition from Thai and Chinese goods is also making it more difficult for Vietnamese firms to export to Cambodia.

"Therefore, organising trade promotion programmes to promote Vietnamese goods there is imperative," Tuan said.

Pho Nam Phuong, ITPC director, said the north-western region of Cambodia, which includes Battambang, the province with the second highest population in Cambodia, and Siem Reap, which attracts three million visitors a year, had great demand for many kinds of goods.

The ITPC said people in the region mainly consumed products imported from Thailand and China, especially consumer goods, construction materials, farm machinery, animal feed, and refrigeration appliances.

Since Vietnamese firms focused mainly on Phnom Penh, not many of their goods were popular here, it said.

Vietnamese goods do have a market in Cambodia, and many Cambodian consumers are fond of products made by companies like ABC Bakery, Vissan, and Saigon Cosmetics, according to Phuong.

If there was a focus on trade promotion and transportation of goods, Vietnamese goods would surely grab a huge market share in Cambodia's north-west, she said.

Vietnamese businesses should also tie up with Cambodian partners in services like tourism, transportation, healthcare and hospitality, she added.

Trade between the two countries was worth $3.28 billion last year, and they have set a target of $5 billion this year. — VNS

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