10:15 | 26/11/2018 Economy
(VEN) - Vietnam and Romania recently signed a memorandum of understanding on investment promotion and a memorandum of understanding on small- and medium-sized enterprise development, opening up opportunities for Vietnam to lure Romanian capital.
According to the Ministry of Planning and Investment, Romania currently ranks 91st among the 129 countries and territories investing in Vietnam, with two valid projects for total registered capital of US$1.2 million. Vietnam has not had any investment project in Romania.
At a meeting with Romanian Minister of Business Environment, Commerce and Entrepreneurship (MMACA) Stefan-Radu Oprea in late October 2018, Vietnamese Minister of Planning and Investment Nguyen Chi Dung said investment between the two sides has not met its potential.
According to Nguyen Chi Dung, Vietnam holds great potential for foreign direct investment (FDI) due to its impressive economic growth. GDP growth reached 6.81 percent in 2017 and 6.98 percent in the first nine months of 2018. During the 2016-2018 period, GDP growth is expected to average 5.67 percent.
In addition to positive economic growth, Vietnam has also improved its business and investment environment. The country is cutting at least 50 percent of its administrative procedures, with 61 percent of business conditions already reduced and simplified. According to the latest Doing Business 2018 report, Vietnam ranked 68th among the 190 economies in the Ease of Doing Business index, an increase of 14 spots compared to the previous report. In addition, Vietnam jumped into 55th place, up five places from 2016 and 20 places from five years ago in the Global Competitiveness Report 2017-2018 issued by the World Economic Forum.
The most noticeable improvement in the business environment is an increase in newly established businesses. This figure reached 130,000 in 2017, a year-on-year increase of nearly 15 percent. In the first nine months of 2018, some 96,611 businesses were established. Currently, about 700,000 enterprises operate in the country, and this figure is expected to reach one million by 2020.
Opportunities to attract Romanian capital will expand once the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) is signed next year following six years of negotiations. With commitments to eliminate import duties of more than 99 percent, exports are expected to increase strongly.