PM to Dutch firms: Come grow with us

12:31 | 06/08/2017 Cooperation

(VEN) - Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has assured Dutch firms that Vietnam is removing restrictions in a number of areas, particularly telecommunications, finance and banking, and increasing the cap on ownership by foreign investors.  

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc (middle) witnesses a cooperation deal at the Vietnam-Netherlands Business Forum

Meeting with leading Dutch businesses on his visit to the Netherlands earlier this month at the Vietnam-Netherlands Business Forum, the PM said his country is making a concerted effort to build a development-facilitating, transparent government, and create favorable conditions for businesses.

The forum was organized by the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) in cooperation with the Confederation of Netherlands Industry and Employers. It was attended by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Social Affairs and Employment of the Netherlands, Lodewijk Asscher, chairman of the Royal Association of MKB-Nederland Michael van Straalen, chairman of VCCI Vu Tien Loc, leaders of Vietnamese ministries and sectors, and representatives from over 450 Dutch and Vietnamese enterprises.

Asscher mentioned the long history of bilateral cooperation between the two countries since the 17th century when Dutch businessmen first operated in Vietnam. He expressed his pleasure with the progress the two countries have made in economic, trade and other ties in recent years, noting that with the population of 93 million people, Vietnam is a huge consumer market.

Asscher quoted a Dutch proverb that says when we see bears on the road, we only see dangers and obstacles without recognizing the opportunities.

Prime Minister Phuc, for his part, agreed that cooperation between Vietnam and the Netherlands was beneficial for both sides. The Vietnamese government will be assisting Dutch businesses and protecting their interests, he promised.

He also pointed out that already many Dutch brands had gained the trust of Vietnamese consumers, among them Heineken, Unilever, Dutch Lady and Philips.

He described Vietnam’s unique strengths in agriculture, especially high-quality seafood, tropical fruit and medicinal plants, and said he hoped the Netherlands would help Vietnam improve its capacity and increase its presence in the global value chain.

The head of the Vietnamese government said he welcomed all Dutch businesses, including small and medium-sized enterprises, to Vietnam to invest and do business.

PM Phuc also answered the questions of the chairman of the Royal Association of MKB-Nederland Michael van Straalen about challenges Vietnam is facing and the government’s support in helping investors make the most of their opportunities. He said the biggest challenge continues to be climate change – the same challenge the Netherlands is facing.

“We are actively cooperating with the Netherlands to overcome this challenge, to create a better environment for the transfer of science and technology and to facilitate foreign and domestic investors. Vietnam has transparent laws as well as the Law on Foreign Investment, which is very open to creating conditions for investors,” Nguyen Xuan Phuc said.

Nhat Quang