Executives of Norway’s Sapa Group and Vietnam’s Benthanh Group (BTG) recently inked a contract on expanding their aluminium factory in Vietnam.

With more facilities and space, the second phase, worth 8 million USD, will raise the plant’s output to 15,000 tonnes when operational in 2016.

At the signing ceremony in Oslo on June 26, Vietnamese Ambassador Le Thi Tuyet Mai and State Secretary to Norwegian Minister of Industry and Trade Lars Jocob Hiim spoke highly of the two firms’ cooperation.

They also expressed their belief that the signing of a free trade agreement between Vietnam and the European Free Trade Association (grouping Norway, Switzerland, Iceland, and Liechtenstein) will further enhance business and trade relations between both countries.

The two sides also highlighted the Vietnamese and Norwegian Governments’ commitment to continuing to bridge the two business circles so as to create more effective joint projects such as that between Sapa and BTG.

BTG General Director Nguyen Quang Tien said the joint venture’s revenue grew 9.4 percent while its pre-tax profit jumped 38 percent per year from 2011 to 2013.

Aside from serving the Vietnamese market, Sapa BTG’s products are also exported to the North America and Japan, he added.-VNA