|A Viet NamMotor Industry Corporation (Vinamotor) assembly line in HCM City. Vinamotor has used South Korean technology to assemble lorries. — VNA/VNS Photo Thanh Phan
HCM CITY (VNS) — Viet Nam – South Korean economic co-operation has gained great achievements in the last 20 years, and it is expected to become even more significant in the next 20 years, delegates heard at a seminar held yesterday in HCM City.
"The seminar is a chance to increase our economic co-operation as well as solve all challenges," Kim Heung Soo, deputy chairman of the Korean Chamber of Commerce and Industry in HCM City (KOCHAM), said during his opening speech.
South Korea is the biggest foreign investor in Viet Nam with over US$43.4 billion investment, 4,000 companies and jobs for more than 1 million residents. Bilateral trade is over $30.3 billion.
"South Korean enterprises have contributed to economic growth of HCM City with 1,152 projects, $3.9 billion in capital, 1,800 enterprises. There are also 80,000 Koreans living in the city," Tat Thanh Cang, deputy general secretary of the city's Party Committee and deputy chairman of the city People's Committee, said at the seminar.
Nguyen Noi, deputy head of the Ministry of Planning and Investment's Foreign Investment Department, spoke about new policies for investment at the seminar.
"Enterprise income tax will drop from 22 per cent to 20 per cent from early 2016 and to 17 per cent for those who will invest in difficult and remote areas or in some special fields for 10 years," he said.
Foreign enterprises would receive lower income tax of 10 per cent in special cases.
"Stable politics and social security, a high GDP growth rate, competitive human resources, more incentive policies, deep global integration, strategic location, cultural similarities, and strategic partnership agreements, as well as the up-coming Viet Nam – Korea free trade agreement are all reasons why the Korean enterprise community has invested in Viet Nam," he added.
Bilateral trade between the two countries increased from $500 million in 1992 to $28.8 billion last year. South Korea is Viet Nam's third largest trade partner and fourth largest export market.
"By 2020, bilateral trade between Viet Nam and South Korea is expected to be $70 billion and there will be full cooperation in industry," said Le Hai An, deputy head of the Ministry of Industry and Trade's Asia – Pacific Market Department.
He noted that when the Viet Nam – Korea FTA comes into effect, Viet Nam would be able to expand its export market, increase competitiveness, improve effectiveness of raw material imports, and attract more investment from South Korea.
The seminar was organised by KOCHAM in co-operation with the Ministry of Planning and Investment. — VNS