08:04 | 31/08/2014 Cooperation
(VEN) - According to foreign direct investment (FDI) businesses and foreign organizations in Vietnam, Vietnam currently has many competitive advantages when compared with other Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries including the young, ambitious and hard-working labor force. However, businesses will have to face growing competition from the regional market. Vietnam Economic News’ Hung Cuong reported opinions of several foreign experts, regarding opportunities and challenges for Vietnam now when the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) is nearing.
Seiji Masuda, General Director of the Sanko Fastem Vietnam Co., Ltd.:
Making the most of advantages
After the AEC is established in 2015, the ASEAN market will open many opportunities for businesses in the industrial sector in the region. As for Vietnam, the major advantage lies in the young, dynamic, eager-to-learn and hard-working engineers and workers.
The AEC will also help Vietnam improve its business environment, ranging from customs and administrative procedures to more balanced investment preferences. Attracting more investment means a faster and more active process of technology transfer which will contribute to improving the quality of industrial products and creating an impetus for robust growth of the Vietnamese industrial sector towards development on a par with other countries.
Requirements from competition and integration with the regional economy will be mixed forcing the government and businesses of Vietnam to try harder to prove Vietnam’s position in ASEAN. These factors will together stimulate robust and sustainable economic growth in Vietnam in the long term.
Nobuhiko Masuda, Sales Manager of the Numerical Simulation Tech (NST) Japan: Requiring high-quality human resources for the AEC
Vietnam is emerging as one of the most dynamically developing economies in Southeast Asia and is expected to grow faster in the years to come after the AEC is established by the end of 2015. However, when compared with other countries such as Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia, the Vietnamese industrial sector has not reached a high level of competition in terms of work skills, material facilities and technology.
In addition, Vietnamese support industries have developed below the expectation although businesses have tried to renew their technology and improve their products. Vietnamese manufacturers are still unable to meet demand for accessories for FDI businesses like Samsung, Nokia, Honda and Toyota.
The establishment of the AEC also means that the ASEAN production network will compete more fiercely and that to exist, integrate and develop in the long term Vietnamese businesses need to have high-skilled workers and well-educated and creative engineers.
Narucha Ruchuphan, Director of Board of Investment of Thailand’s Unit for Industrial Linkage Development:
Focusing on support industries
The AEC to be established by 2015 will create a general production sector and high competition with Vietnamese businesses given that support industries in Thailand and Indonesia are stronger than in Vietnam and that the investment environment in Myanmar is rising. Vietnam needs to apply a variety of more effective policies towards support industries to attract medium to small-sized enterprises.
Vietnam has a number of advantages which Thailand did not have before including young, skilled and hard-working human resources which are important for creating vitality of the manufacturing industry.
Efforts from businesses and attention from the government are also necessary for making the Vietnamese industrial sector stand firm against competition and join the regional and global production and supply chain in a more sustainable manner./.
After the AEC is established in 2015, it will open a vast market with more than 600 million people, an annual gross domestic product (GDP) of about US$3 trillion and opportunities for businesses to develop in a fair manner. The AEC will make great progress in terms of economic integration and development throughout the Southeast Asian region.