|A modern production line of Việt Nam’s Nittan Company at the Việt Nam Singapore Industrial Park (VSIP) in the northern province of Bắc Ninh. — Photo VNA|
HÀ NỘI — As many as 110 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) from Việt Nam participated in a conference in Singapore last Friday to seek business and investment opportunities in this foreign market.
The meeting was inspired by the co-operation among the Việt Nam–Singapore Friendship Association, the Vietnamese Embassy in Singapore and the Vietnamese Entrepreneurs Club under the Vietnamese Association of SMEs.
At the conference, Vietnamese Ambassador to Singapore Nguyễn Tiến Minh highlighted the presence of Vietnamese SMEs participating in the event for the first time, which he said indicated their ability to take advantage of opportunities overseas. Through Singapore, Vietnamese firms can better serve the regional and global market, especially Europe, a significant trade partner for both Việt Nam and Singapore, Minh said.
The diplomat also said the relationship between the two countries had grown rapidly over the past few years in all fields of co-operation such as economics, defence, education and training and citizen exchange. Singapore is currently the third-largest foreign investor and the leading ASEAN investor in Việt Nam, with over US$38 billion invested in more than 1,600 Vietnamese projects related to the processing, technology, manufacturing and real estate, as well as construction, transportation and logistics industries. In addition, Singapore is Việt Nam’s 12th largest trading partner, with bilateral trade doubling over the last decade to reach nearly $16 billion last year.
Singapore Business Federation (SBF) representative Thian Tai Chew told reporters that the latest survey found the ASEAN was the top region where Singaporean businesses wanted to expand their investments, while Việt Nam ranked third amongst the Southeast Asian countries for targeted investment.
He also confirmed that more than 24,000 SBF members, mostly SMEs, were interested in Việt Nam’s market, typically in the food, retail, e-commerce and supply chain space, as well as infrastructure and urban development. Singaporean SMEs shine in these sectors, and they want to share their experiences with their Vietnamese partners.
Besides providing information on investment and the business environment in Singapore, the conference also gave Vietnamese firms answers to their questions and granted them the opportunity to network and form alliances for co-operative projects or to expand their exports in the near future.
Recent high-ranking visits between the two countries have developed bilateral relations, promising to open new opportunities for both sides’ enterprises to foster trade and investment links.
The upcoming visit to Việt Nam by Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at the end of March is expected to promote co-ordination in a variety of areas, especially in the exchange of citizens. — VNS