Online conference on trade promotion via the Vietnam community in India (Photo: BNews/Vietnam News Agency).
It was jointly held by the Vietnam Trade Promotion Agency (VIETRADE) at the Ministry of Industry and Trade, the trade office of the Embassy of Vietnam in India, the association of Vietnamese people in India and Nepal, and the Indian Importers Chambers of Commerce and Industry in Vietnam.
According to the organizing board, the event served as a bridge connecting Vietnamese people in India with Vietnamese businesses to share information and experience in trade prospects as well as business and investment opportunities in India.
Speaking at the conference, VIETRADE Deputy Director General Le Hoang Tai said that India is one of the most populous countries which have huge demand for different kinds of products. Vietnam, therefore, boasts huge potential for export to the Indian market of nearly 1.4 billion people.
Vietnam’s prominent exports to the country include farm produce and processed foodstuff, with dragon fruit and basa fish especially welcomed, while other products such as cashew nut, coffee, spices, rubber also have big room for growth.
The two governments have agreed on the need to develop supply chains in the fields of garments and textiles, footwear, electronic devices, machinery, and mechanical products, he noted. The two countries can supplement each other to increase the added value of many products like steel, metals, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, plastic and plastic products.
Tai highlighted that bilateral trade increased 2.06 fold from 5.43 billion USD to 11.21 billion USD between 2016 and 2019, with Vietnam’s export turnover rising from 2.69 billion USD to 6.67 billion USD, and import value from 2.75 billion USD to 4.54 billion USD. Vietnam posted a trade surplus of 2.1 billion USD with India in 2019.
Those figures, however, remain modest compared to potential and expectations of both sides.
Meanwhile, Nepal is also viewed as a promising market for Vietnam. Both countries are members of the WTO and annual bilateral trade averages about 30 million USD.
Vietnam exports mobile phones and components, computers, electronic devices, and peppercorn to Nepal, while importing cosmetics and hygiene products, among others.
To increase exports to India and Nepal, one of important and favourable channels is through the overseas Vietnamese communities in the two markets. There are around 500 Vietnamese people in India and 40-50 in Nepal.
Nguyen Thu Hien, representative of the Indian Importers’ Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Vietnam, advised Vietnamese firms to study the customs and culture of India prior to working on export contracts, and should anticipate a language barrier, time-consuming sea transport, and competition from other countries such as Thailand and Malaysia.
Participants showed their hope that entrepreneurs and intellectuals in India and Nepal will help Vietnamese enterprises gain access to the two markets reasonably and effectively./.
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