To succeed in a demanding market like the EU, Vietnamese firms should improve the quality of their goods, invest in technology and become more professional, economist Nguyễn Trí Hiếu said. — VNA/VNS Photo
HCM CITY — Exports by HCM City-based enterprises in the first six months of the year topped US$19.6 billion, a 9.2 per cent increase year-on-year, according to the city People’s Committee.
Industrial products accounted for $13 billion, or nearly 77 per cent.
Exports of computers, electronic products and components were worth $6 billion, an increase of 43 per cent.
Exports of textiles and garments were worth more than $2.6 billion and agricultural products accounted for nearly $1.8 billion.
With the EU-Việt Nam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) coming into effect, Vietnamese enterprises have a major opportunity to expand their export markets.
Nguyễn Lâm Viên, general director and chairman of agricultural company Vinamit, said the EVFTA would enable Vietnamese firms to export goods at zero tax, penetrate new markets and learn and improve product quality.
“Vinamit is completing procedures to participate in a trade fair in Germany in September to promote Việt Nam's clean agricultural products.
“We have the advantage of organic foods and a lot of potential in the clean agriculture sector, and so the opportunity to introduce clean agricultural products to the European market is one we cannot ignore.”
Phạm Thái Bình, general director of Trung An Hi-tech Agriculture Joint Stock Company, said his company exports a few thousand tonnes of rice a year to various markets in the EU such as France, Germany and Switzerland.
He hoped the EVFTA would improve the opportunities for the rice industry and exporters.
This year the Vietnamese seafood sector has increased its exports to the EU by more than 30 per cent thanks to improvements in quality. The EVFTA is set to give exports a further boost.
Economist Nguyễn Trí Hiếu said the EVFTA would bring both opportunities and challenges to Vietnamese firms, and their products could only compete with European meat, milk and other agricultural product based on quality and price.
The city customs department has said to help enterprises expand their exports, it would streamline procedures.
It is now looking at ways to reduce the cargo clearance time by 50-70 per cent. VNS