With its relatively high growth rate and improved income per capita, Vietnam has been offering both opportunities and challenges for Argentine enterprises, according to Argentinian economic expert Julio Sevares.

In a story published in Argentina’s Clarin newspaper on May 27, Julio Savares hailed Vietnam’s economic achievements in recent years and highlighted cooperation opportunities in trade and investment.

Julio Sevares, a professor at the University of Buenos Aires (UBA), also indicated a number of benefits and challenges that Argentinian enterprises face when operating or investing in Vietnam.

From its historic military victory, Vietnam has gained successes in the economy, and as a result Argentina has been benefitting from the Southeast Asian nation’s development by exporting goods and diversifying its products and investment portfolio, according to the story.

Vietnam’s economy grew by 5.8 percent last year and is expected to rise by 6 percent this year. Per capita income has increased fivefold since the economic reform process began 30 years ago.

The Vietnamese Government has issued a number of policies to attract private investment and has introduced reforms of its tax, customs and investment regulations. Furthermore, Vietnam is promoting the development of products of highly added value.

In 2002-2014, the trade volume between Vietnam and Argentina increased 20-fold to 1.706 billion USD in total.

In addition to animal food, tanned leather, animal and plant oil, wheat and cotton, Vietnam also has a high demand for Argentinian meat, fruit, wine, milk and pharmaceutical products.

According to Julio Savares, Argentinian businesses operating in Vietnam have to navigate cultural differences and face growing competition from local products.

The Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) between Vietnam and other Asian countries with Chile, Australia and New Zealand pose another challenge to Argentinian businesses, Julio Sevares said.

Vietnam has been a member of the World Trade Organisation since 2007 and a member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations since 1995. It signed an FTA with the Republic of Korea and is currently finalising the procedures to sign FTAs with the Eurasia Economic Union, the European Union and the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which features the United States and Japan.

Vietnam offer a great opportunity for Argentina, but this also requires Argentinian private and State-owned enterprises to develop and apply a long-term strategy, he said.-VNA