Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc expected more investment capital from Japanese companies following the enforcement of the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) and the EU – Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA), helping Japan retake the top ranking among investors in Vietnam.

Overview of the meeting. Source: VGP.

Overview of the meeting. Source: VGP.

The Vietnamese government seeks Japanese support in perfecting the legal framework and business environment for greater competitiveness, Phuc said at a meeting with leading Japanese corporations, including Toshiba, Fujitsu, Hitachi, Daikin, Mazda, among others in Osaka on June 28. 

On June 30 in Hanoi, EU and Vietnam are scheduled to sign the EVFTA. By 2020, Vietnam would have free trade relation with 55 partners, including the G7 nations and 15 members of G20, Phuc added. 

The CPTPP would allow Japanese companies to participate in Vietnam’s government procurement market, which is growing at a rapid rate, Phuc asserted. 

Meanwhile, those with strong expertise in fields such as banking, insurance, construction, logistics, accounting, graphic design, among others, are expected to have greater opportunities in Vietnam’s market. 

Regarding the EVFTA, Phuc expected the deal to ensure a fair and open Vietnam’s business and investment environment for not only EU investors, but also globally, including Japanese. 

The CPTPP and EVFTA would cement Vietnam’s role as a production and export hub for international markets, particularly in the fields of high quality services, green and renewable energy, manufacturing, he added. 

Japanese companies eyes Vietnam’s IT sector

Currently, 65% of Vietnam’s population is aged under 35, while the middle class accounts for 15% and is on track to reach 50% of the population by 2030, forming an attractive and large market for companies doing businesses in Vietnam, Phuc informed. 

The PM referred to a recent survey conduct by the Japanese External Trade Organization (JETRO) showing 65% of Japanese businesses operating in Vietnam reported a profit and 70% are planning business expansion. 

 
Vietnam's PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc at the meeting. Source: VGP

Vietnam's PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc at the meeting. Source: VGP

Meanwhile, Vietnam stood third among the top investment destinations abroad for Japanese manufacturers, said Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) in a yearly survey. 

Vietnam is developing strategy for digital transformation, prioritizing over IT infrastructure development and implementing 5G network in 2020, Phuc added. 

Additionally, the country is proceeding with building a national database, aiming to become a cyber security hub for ASEAN, Phuc continued, expecting Vietnam to have one million high-quality IT engineers in the 2020 – 2025 period. 

With a focus on digital technology, Vietnam aims to become one of the world’s top electronics producers and IT software exporters. 

Naoyoshi Takatsuna, CEO and vice president of Fujitsu, said the company expressed interests in providing high quality IT personnel for Vietnam, which is essential for the sustainable development of Vietnam’s IT sector. 

On this issue, CEO of Nidec Watanebe said the corporation is considering a plan to invest in the Hoa Lac Hi-tech Park, on the outskirts of Hanoi, requesting more support from the government in the process of applying for construction license. 

PM Phuc said the Ministry of Construction is working on simplifying procedures to grant construction licenses and expected Nidec to speed up the investment process in the Hoa Lac HI-tech Park. Hanoitimes

Linh Pham