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Feb 29, 2024 / 22:57

Hanoi seeks solutions to sell Vietnamese goods to foreign distribution chains

Selling directly to foreign distribution channels offers promising prospects for Vietnamese exports.

In 2024, Hanoi will continue to provide trade promotion and financial support to local businesses to enhance cooperation with foreign distribution networks.

 A Vietnamese consumer buys Vietnamese lychees at an AEON supermarket in Japan. Photo: VNA

High standards required

Tran Thi Phuong Lan, Director of Hanoi's Department of Industry and Trade, noted that in recent years many companies have demonstrated a better understanding of consumer needs, learned advanced quality management in supply chains, and improved product quality control, especially for agricultural, forestry and aquatic products that require traceability. This has ensured that their products meet the standards required to sell to leading global brands.

However, the number of successful companies is still small, as many companies have not been able to sell to foreign distribution systems, said Bui Duy Quang, deputy director of the Hanoi Promotion Agency.

"Foreign distributors have high demands on product quality, standards, origin and sustainable development, making it difficult to export through their retail channels," he explained.

In addition, most small and medium-sized enterprises often lack the expertise, skills and financial resources to upgrade their production and management to meet the requirements of foreign retail chains, he added.

Quang suggested that for Vietnamese goods to have a solid position in international supermarkets, local companies need to implement synchronized solutions from production to distribution and consumption, with a focus on ensuring quality.

"More importantly, the participation of financial institutions and large banks is needed to help enterprises access capital for upgrading machinery, equipment and facilities, as well as for scientific and technological innovation," Quang recommended.

To help businesses sell Vietnamese goods to foreign distribution systems, the Hanoi People's Committee recently issued a plan to implement the project "Encouraging Vietnamese Enterprises to Participate Directly in Foreign Distribution Networks by 2030".

Accordingly, the city will synchronously implement eight groups of tasks and solutions in 2024, such as holding business matching workshops between manufacturers and exporters and foreign distributors.

Hanoi will also host the Vietnamese Goods Week Programs at foreign distribution shopping malls and help local enterprises showcase their goods at these events.

The city will also actively conduct market research in various countries, organize trade linkages between Vietnamese enterprises and overseas Vietnamese entrepreneurs' distribution networks, and conduct promotion and marketing activities.

In 2024, the city plans to support more than 500 enterprises with market information and provide training and consultancy to more than 100 enterprises to improve their competitiveness and supply capacity to participate in global value chains.

It will also help more than 100 companies develop cross-border e-commerce capabilities, facilitate more than 100 links and transactions with overseas distribution networks, and support the direct sale of more than 80 products to overseas distribution networks.

The city will actively send manufacturers and exporters to explore foreign markets, learn market requirements, and establish relationships with distributors.

In addition, the city will conduct communication campaigns to raise awareness of the benefits of participating in the project, with the aim of changing perceptions and improving enterprises' understanding of the advantages of selling directly to foreign distribution networks.

The city will also research and develop policy mechanisms to encourage Hanoi enterprises to proactively establish distribution systems in overseas markets.


Enhancing connections with global retailers

In recent years, Vietnamese quality products have reached millions of consumers around the world with the support of leading global retailers.

Ta Hoang Linh, Director General of the Department of European-American Market under the Ministry of Industry and Trade, said that foreign retailers consider Vietnam as a strategic location in their global sourcing strategy. The current challenge for enterprises is how to meet the requirements of foreign distributors and retail systems.

"In 2024, Vietnam's overseas trade missions will continue to support Vietnamese enterprises in seeking new business opportunities and promoting connectivity with global supply chains. This will enable them to better understand and maximize the benefits of free trade agreements in their business strategies," he told hanoimoi newspaper.

Some 30 overseas trade missions are expected to bring large delegations of buyers to Vietnam to participate in the Vietnam International Sourcing Expo, a global supply chain networking event being held in Ho Chi Minh City from June 6-8. The event aims to facilitate business meetings and explore trade opportunities, Linh said.

Paul Le, Vice Chairman of Central Retail Vietnam, believes Vietnamese businesses should focus on telling the story behind their products when participating in trade promotion programs and export linkages rather than just showcasing products.

For several years, the company has partnered with the Ministry of Industry and Trade to organize Vietnamese Goods Week in Thailand, helping businesses promote their brands and increase sales opportunities through distribution channels in Thailand.

 To have a presence on the shelves of Central Retail supermarkets in Thailand and expand to the world, Paul Le suggested that Vietnamese companies need to establish a strong foothold in the domestic market by focusing on processing, packaging, and branding. Especially in terms of product packaging, it should be easy to read and memorable, and both colors and the story of the product should be paid attention to, according to Paul Le.