Mar 25, 2014 / 10:33

South Africa - a potential market for Vietnam

The Hanoitimes - South Africa is a potential trade and investment market for Vietnamese businesses, said Doan Duy Khuong, Vice Chairman of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI).

Addressing a Vietnam-South Africa trade and investment promotion conference in Hanoi on March 24, Khuong noted the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries in 1993 has laid a firm legal foundation for stronger cooperation.

Both countries have signed a number of agreements, including a bilateral trade agreement, an agreement on granting the Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status in bilateral trade, and an agreement on setting up the Inter-Governmental Partnership Forum for Economic Cooperation.

Vietnam mainly exports footwear, garments, coffee, rice, gemstones, precious metals, wood and timber products to South Africa. It imports steel and iron, metals, chemicals, plastic materials, cotton, fibre and fertilisers.

Two-way trade turnover has increased significantly over the years, from US$722.6 million in 2012 to US$920 million in 2013.

However, both Khuong and South African Ambassador to Vietnam Kgomotso Ruth Magau shared the view that the results remain modest compared with the two countries’ potential.

They expressed their hope that Vietnamese and South African businesses will play a key role in promoting bilateral economic and trade ties.

South Africa is currently Vietnam’s largest trade partner in Africa, Magau said, adding South Africa considers Vietnam an important and long-term ally.