Speakers at the “Investment Opportunities in Việt Nam” conference held on Thursday (Apr 22) in HCM City. — VNS Photo Bồ Xuân Hiệp
HCM CITY — Việt Nam will continue to streamline administrative reform and offer multiple incentives to foreign investors, especially those from India, an official said at the “Investment Opportunities in Việt Nam” conference held on Thursday in HCM City.
Trần Thị Hải Yên, director of the Investment Promotion Centre - South Việt Nam under the Ministry of Planning and Investment, said there was immense potential for improvement in bilateral trade between Việt Nam and India.
“Việt Nam has emerged as an appealing destination for investment for India with its stable political and economic environment, attractive investment policies, competitive labour costs, availability of raw materials, and potential market access due to free trade agreements that Việt Nam has concluded,” she said.
Key attractive investment sectors include hi-tech agriculture, food processing, renewable energy, the supporting industry, healthcare and education, infrastructure, real estate, logistics, and tourism, according to Yên.
Việt Nam plans to set up a task force to facilitate foreign investment, especially after the COVID-19 pandemic ends, she said.
The country is among a few countries that saw positive growth last year (2.91 per cent).
Việt Nam's GDP increased by 4.48 per cent in the first quarter of this year, compared with 3.68 per cent in the same period last year. The country is projected to reach a GDP of 6-6.5 per cent this year.
Realised FDI capital increased by $6.5 per cent ($4.1 billion) in the first quarter compared to the same period last year.
Manoj Barthwal, chairman of the Indian Business Chamber Vietnam (INCHAM), said the uncertainty in global trade due to COVID has exposed the over-dependence of world trade on China, which has enhanced the importance of India - Việt Nam trade in international business.
“There’s a growing realisation from both governments on increasing bilateral trade and investment,” he said.
Fred Burke, partner at Baker & McKenzie Vietnam Ltd, highlighted the positive changes in the Vietnamese enterprise laws for foreign investors. “Foreign investors can now benefit greatly from various free trade agreements that Việt Nam has signed with the EU, the US and other ASEAN nations,” he said.
Robert M King, partner and tax leader at E&Y Vietnam, said the tax rates in Việt Nam were among the lowest in the Southeast Asia region.
Vaibhav Bhanchawat, executive vice president and business head of Marico South East Asia Corporation, highlighted the strength of India and perception around “Brand India”, saying it was important to improve the perception so that goods and services from India can be accepted in Việt Nam.
The event was organised by INCHAM in collaboration with the Investment Promotion Centre - South Việt Nam under the Ministry of Planning and Investment.
The two countries established diplomatic relations in 1972, which was lifted to a comprehensive strategic partnership in 2016.
India is one of Việt Nam’s top 10 trading partners, while Việt Nam is India’s fourth largest trading partner in ASEAN. Trade between the two countries has grown steadily and reached $12.34 billion in the 2019-20 period.
Many Indian investors see Việt Nam as a prominent destination for investment, especially in sectors in which India has competitive advantages such as infrastructure, energy, IT & technology, and pharmaceuticals, among others. — VNS