A conference to foster investment opportunities and trade exchanges between Vietnam and Finland took place in central Thua Thien-Hue province on May 3.

As part of activities to mark the 40th anniversary of diplomatic ties between the two countries, the event was co-organised by the provincial People’s Committee and the Finnish Embassy in Vietnam.

Speaking at the event, Finnish Ambassador to Vietnam Kimmo Lahdevirta emphasised that there are various trade-cooperation opportunities between the two countries, especially when the Vietnam–EU Free Trade Agreement (FTA) is to be signed.

The conference helps Finland determine whether Vietnamese small and medium–sized enterprises (SMEs) and the province’s SMEs in particular are able to cooperate with Finnish partners, said Lahdevirta.

It also offers support instruments and business information to domestic firms that want to cooperate with Finnish partners, he added.

The diplomat said Vietnamese firms and research institutes need to establish cooperative relations with Finnish representative agencies as well as the 100 enterprises operating in Vietnam to seek business opportunities in renewable energy and clean technology.

During the event, participants delivered each country’s socio-economic situation, investment cooperation opportunities and business relations between Finland and Vietnam, and Thua Thien-Hue in particular.

The Finnish side introduced its Embassy’s support mechanism to Vietnamese enterprises, which helps them find partners and boost exports to Finland and northern European countries.

By the end of 2012, Finland ranked 26 th among 98 foreign investors in Vietnam with eight projects worth a total of 336 million USD. Finland is executing two projects to help Thua Thien–Hue province develop its agricultural information management system.-VNA