|Medicine is produced at Saokim Pharma for export to many markets, including Europe, Africa and Asia. Vietnamese firms have been urged to study opportunities and expand exports to Myanmar. — VNA/VNS Photo Trong Dat
HCM CITY (VNS) — Vietnamese firms should study the Myanmar market and act quickly to take advantage of trade and investment opportunities there, the Investment and Trade Promotion Centre of HCM City has said.
Pham Thiet Hia, the centre's director, said that Myanmar, with its population of 55 million, has high demand for many kinds of products that Vietnamese companies manufacture at a high standard.
"Myanmar people favour Vietnamese goods," he said.
They include electric and electronic equipment, construction materials, information and technology, food, confectionary and agricultural materials and production technologies.
Le Tan Minh, deputy head of the centre's Trade Promotion Division, said voltage regulators were in demand in Myanmar as its electricity grid was being improved.
Myanmar's agricultural production is mainly based on traditional cultivation method.
"So it needs hi-technology from Viet Nam to apply agricultural production and processing," he said.
Do Ngoc Tam, deputy chairman of the Viet Nam-Myanmar Friendship Association, said the manufacturing sector had not developed in Myanmar.
As a result, Myanmar mostly imported consumer products from other countries, mainly from the two bordering countries of China and Thailand.
In recent years, Vietnamese firms had expanded exports to Myanmar, but they still accounted for a small market share due to high transportation costs, he said.
Vietnamese goods have also faced fierce competition from Thai and Chinese goods.
"Myanmar is currently offering incentives to stimulate investment in manufacturing sector, so Vietnamese firms should study the market and act quickly," he said.
Minh said there was still room for Vietnamese goods to penetrate various segments of the market.
Vietnamese firms should clearly understand Myanmar's customs and tariff policies if they want to penetrate the market, he said.
In addition, firms should pay attention to research on consumer culture to map out an appropriate means to approach customers and partners.
They should also clearly state information on their products in both English and Burmese on the packaging, he said.
HCM City Expo 2016
In an effort to help Vietnamese firms promote trade in Myanmar market, ITPC will organise the Viet Nam-Myanmar Trade, Service and Tourism Exhibition 2016 (HCM City Expo 2016) in Yangon from April 1-4.
The expo will feature 90 leading Vietnamese enterprises involved in sectors such as processed food, household utensils, garments and textiles, as well as electronics and interior decorations in 120 booths, said Ho Hong Long, head of the ITPC's Trade Promotion Division.
In addition, the centre will organise a market research programme by visiting wholesale markets, supermarkets and others in Yangon and Mandalay from March 31 to April 5 to help Vietnamese firms understand more about the Myanmar market, he said.
Last year Viet Nam's exports to Myanmar were worth more than VND8,453,230 million compared to the 2014 figure of VND7,725,158 million. — VNS