Monday, 17 Dec 2018
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ECONOMY

Vietnam holds huge business opportunities for French companies

Updated at Monday, 05 Nov 2018, 11:07
The Hanoitimes - French companies have to grasp this opportunity and could not afford making a slow move, as South Korean and Japanese businesses have been very active in Vietnam.
Vietnam’s economy is growing at a rapid rate, translating into huge business opportunities for foreign companies, including the French, according to Henri-Charles Claude, president of the French Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Vietnam (CCIFV). 
 
Illustrative photo.
Illustrative photo.
French companies have to grasp this opportunity and could not afford making a slow move, as South Korean and Japanese businesses have been very active in Vietnam, said Henri in the France – Vietnam Business Forum held in Ho Chi Minh City on November 4, in the framework of French Prime Minister Édouard Philippe’s visit to Vietnam from November 2 to 4.

In the coming time, the CCIFV will assist Vietnamese companies in cooperating with their French counterparts, Henri added. 

Jean Jacques Bouflet, vice president of the European Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam (EuroCham), said Vietnam has signed a series of bilateral and multilateral trade agreements, including the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC), the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans – Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), and the EU – Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA), among others, which would be a major advantage for export companies in Vietnam. 

Moreover, the signing of the EVFTA, which has been forwarded to the European Council for consideration, will create favorable conditions for both Vietnamese and EU companies. Bouflet urged French businesses to get a foothold in the Vietnamese market before the deal comes into effect. 

Valentin Tran, general manager of French multinational corporation Andros, informed that the group has chosen Vietnam as its production hub in a bid to tap in regional markets. 

Additionally, the strengthened relation between Vietnam and France is an important factor for Andros to choose Vietnam as its focus of long-term investment. 

At the forum, Fabrice Carrasco, managing director of Kantar Worldpanel in Vietnam, Indonesia and the Philippines, stressed that demand for domestic consumption in Vietnam is growing at an annual rate of 12%, which is projected to be double in the next ten years. 

Truong Gia Binh, chairman of Vietnam’s leading IT service provider FPT, added that the IT industry has been growing significantly over the last three years. According to Binh, Vietnam will continue to develop smart cities and high-tech projects in the future. 

Most of French companies at the forum expressed interest in the ongoing restructuring process of Vietnam’s state-owned enterprises (SOEs). Meanwhile, there remains potential for cooperation in the fields of infrastructure development, smart city, and clean energy in Vietnam. 

In the first ten months of 2018, France had 32 foreign direct investment (FDI) projects licensed in Vietnam with registered capital of US$470 million, and other 10 projects permited to add US$73 million. 

During the period, 83 projects have had US$32.3 million in capital contributed by French investors. Overall, France’s FDI commitments in the January – October period totaled US$717.7 million and is the 9th largest investor out of 105 countries and territories in Vietnam. 
Ngoc Thuy
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