Japanese investors value Vietnamese policies, workforce

14:21 | 22/01/2019 Economy

(VEN) - The Chief Representative of the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) in Ho Chi Minh City, Takimoto Koji, talked about the investment results and trends of Japanese firms in Vietnam in an interview with Vietnam Economic News’ Ngoc Thao.

japanese investors value vietnamese policies workforce
Takimoto Koji, Chief Representative of the Japan External Trade Organization in Ho Chi Minh City

How do you evaluate Japanese investment activities in Vietnam?

We highly appreciate Vietnam’s potential for economic development and look forward to strengthening trade and investment cooperation with Vietnamese partners. In 2017, Japan was the biggest foreign direct investor in Vietnam, posting a record figure of US$9.11 billion.

In the first 11 months of 2018, Japan kept its top spot with nearly US$8 billion, more than a quarter of the total foreign capital poured into Vietnam during the period. Some 65.1 percent of Japanese firms recorded a profit in Vietnam, while nearly 70 percent considered expanding operations. These figures are higher than those in other countries in the region, affirming that Vietnam continues to be an important investment destination for Japanese investors.

Japanese firms have learned about the Vietnamese market and expanded their distribution systems in Vietnam. How do you assess the trends?

Japanese goods have been increasingly popular in the Vietnamese market. With strong support from the government and organizations like JETRO, Japanese firms have strengthened their expansion abroad. When these firms study the Vietnamese market, they aim to introduce high-quality products and seek partners and sale agencies. They also look for Vietnamese goods that suit Japanese consumers’ taste.

How do Japanese firms assess the Vietnamese investment environment?

Japanese investors value Vietnam for its clear policies, stable legal affairs, and young and trained workforce. Despite such advantages, local average wage is ranked sixth in Southeast Asia. Japanese investors have been assisted by local authorities in administrative procedures, including those for tax and customs. Complete infrastructure, and improved waste treatment and power systems in Vietnam’s industrial zones have helped them make quick investment decisions.

What are Japan’s investment prospects in Vietnam?

Vietnam is one of the countries reaching the highest GDP growth in ASEAN. Many Japanese firms intend to form win-win relationships with Vietnamese partners, expecting to find capable local companies to become their long-term partners and join their global supply chains.

Ngoc Thao