|Since the two countries signed an agreement on investment encouragement and protection in 1991, Belgian firms have invested in 17 out of the 63 cities and provinces across Viet Nam. — Photo baocongthuong
HA NOI (VNS)— Belgian businesses are expanding investment activities in Viet Nam to grab opportunities when free trade agreements (FTAs) the country has signed come into effect.
According to the Ministry of Planning and Investment, as of 2015, Belgium ran 59 valid investment projects in Viet Nam in 2015 with total registered capital of VND9,381,060 million, ranking 27th among 105 nations and territories investing in Viet Nam.
Last year, the European country had four newly-licensed investment projects and two registering to increase capital.
Belgian Ambassador to Viet Nam Jehanne Roccas said the number of projects invested by Belgian businesses was quite modest compared to other foreign investors in Viet Nam. However, with Belgium, this was a considerable figure as the country typically only runs about two to three investment projects in a host country.
She said Viet Nam constituted the brightest spot in Asia, adding that with FTAs, the country's export potential would increase in the future.
Viet Nam is also expected to become a manufacturing hub in the world, so Belgian enterprises will consider increasing their presence and activities in the Southeast Asian country, according to the ambassador.
The Ministry of Planning and Investment has said Belgian firms are investing in various fields in Viet Nam, especially construction, processing and manufacturing.
As a transportation center in Europe, Belgium is keen to share experiences and make investments in the field of logistics in Viet Nam.
It has also partnered with Viet Nam to carry out a number of projects in water and health care over the past few years.
Since the two countries signed an agreement on investment encouragement and protection in 1991, Belgian firms have invested in 17 out of the 63 cities and provinces across Viet Nam.
Its two projects worth VND6,179,940 million in Hai Phong have helped the northern port city become one of the leading localities nationwide in FDI attraction.
Bac Ninh province comes second with a Belgium-invested project worth VND933,660 million, followed by HCM City – which attracted the biggest number of projects from the European country, but only small-scale ones (each worth approximately VND8,892,000,000).
In the industrialisation and modernisation process, Viet Nam has big demand for developing transportation, electricity, and mechanics, which are the strengths of Belgium.
Vincent Decuyper, a member from Belgium's Solvay corporation, which is active in the field of chemicals and materials, said the group defines Viet Nam as a good market to expand operations in the Asian region.
He added that foreign chemical companies have been shifting their investment to Viet Nam, so his corporation is following that trend.
To prepare for long-term operations in Viet Nam, the Belgian firm recently held the "Solvay Vietnam Days" to explore opportunities in the market, especially in the fields of oil and gas, fertilizer, chemicals and milk. — VNS