VN goods face stiff AEC competition

Tuesday, Oct 04, 2016 09:16

Nine months after joining the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC), Vietnamese goods still face strong competition in national and regional markets from products from other ASEAN countries, experts said. — VNA/VNS Photo
HA NOI (Biz Hub) — Nine months after joining the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC), Vietnamese goods still face strong competition in national and regional markets from products from other ASEAN countries, experts said.

Tran Thi My Van, director of administration and personnel and communications representative of Acecook Viet Nam Joint Stock Company, said the products of her company have been exported to 47 countries and territories, including three ASEAN countries – Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar.

But Acecook Viet Nam did not manage to enter the Indonesian market, the largest instant noodle market in the ASEAN region which buys five billion units of noodles per year, she said. As a result, the company has not yet realised its expectations of increasing its exports of instant noodles after Viet Nam joined the AEC.

Doan Trong Hieu, director of Thuy Binh Ltd Company, said the company's main export market was Cambodia but the business has faced more difficulties since Viet Nam joined AEC. The company has studied its market carefully and improved the quality of its products as the market demanded. But it has not built its distribution system in ASEAN countries nor opened branches in regional markets.

My Hao Chemical and Cosmetics Joint Stock Company, a company with long experience doing business on ASEAN markets, said local products have faced strong competition in the ASEAN markets, though most customers in ASEAN countries such as Malaysia, Thailand and Cambodia say Vietnamese goods are of good quality, reported

In Thailand, for instance, Vietnamese companies such as My Hao have sold products in locations around Bangkok but could not compete with foreign rivals, a My Hao company representative said.

In the first seven months of this year, Viet Nam experienced a trade surplus with markets on other continents and a trade deficit with Asian markets, especially the ASEAN market, the Ministry of Industry and Trade's Import and Export Department reported. On the ASEAN markets, Viet Nam experienced a large trade deficit with Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore.

The department said Viet Nam joined AEC but exports to ASEAN countries did not increase as expected and local enterprises have braved many difficulties in expanding market share in ASEAN countries.

Meanwhile, local enterprises have also faced fierce competition with ASEAN companies in their home market.

Le Thi Thanh Lam, general director of Sai Gon Food Commercial Joint Stock Company, said local companies have had difficulty retaining their market share of the domestic market due to high competition with foreign companies and their own financial, technological and other weaknesses.

Dinh Thi My Loan, chairwoman of the Association of Viet Nam's Retailers, said local companies, especially retailers, should have close and comprehensive cooperation in production and business at home. Comprehensive reform to improve competitive ability is also needed.

The association proposed that the State develop large retailers strong enough to compete with foreign retailers, Loan said.

Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Cam Tu said companies should take advantage of integration to join AEC to overcome existing difficulties in production and business and to improve competitive ability.

They should also build brand and quality standards for large-scale business operations in the long term future, he said.

Meanwhile, experts said the Government should promote administrative reform to create favourable conditions for trade activities, especially with ASEAN markets.

The Government also should focus on attracting investment in capital and technique, as well as focusing on attracting foreign experts to promote technological transfer and to improve the quality of Vietnamese goods and services. — VNS

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