Conference promotes Vietnam-Singapore trade partnership hinh anh 1An aerial photo of the Vietnam-Singapore Industrial Park in Hai Phong city (Photo: VSIP)

Singapore (VNA) – Up to 110 small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) of Vietnam attended a conference in Singapore on March 10 to seek trade and investment partnership.

The businesses’ participation benefited from an initiative jointly made by the Vietnam-Singapore Friendship Association, the Vietnamese Embassy in Singapore and the Vietnamese Entrepreneurs’ Club under the Vietnamese Association of Small- and Medium-sized Enterprises.

In his speech at the event, Vietnamese Ambassador to Singapore Nguyen Tien Minh highlighted the significance the conference and the presence of Vietnam’s SMEs at the event, saying this shows the businesses’ dynamism to look for business and investment opportunities in foreign markets.

Through Singapore, Vietnamese firms can make inroads into other markets in the region and the world, especially Europe – the important trade partner of both Vietnam and Singapore, he noted.

Thian Tai Chew from the Singapore Business Federation (SBF) said many of the SBF’s 24,000 members, mostly SMEs, are interested in Vietnam’s food, retail, e-commerce, supply chain, and infrastructure and urban development.

These sectors are Singaporean SMEs’ strengths and they want to share experience with Vietnamese partners, he said, reporting the SBF’s latest survey that says Vietnam ranks third among ASEAN member nations that Singaporean firms want to pour their investment into.

The Vietnam-Singapore relations have recorded strong developments in recent years across such fields as economy, defence, education-training, and people-to-people exchange.

Singapore is Vietnam’s third largest foreign investor, with a total investment of over 38 billion USD poured into 1,600 projects in terms of processing, technology, production, real estate, construction, transport and logistics.

The country is also the 12th biggest trade partner of Vietnam, with two-way trade doubling in the last decade, hitting nearly 16 billion USD in 2016.

Recent high-ranking visits of the two countries’ leaders helped lift the bilateral ties, promising to open many new opportunities for the two sides’ enterprises to foster trade and investment links.

The upcoming visit to Vietnam by Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong in late March is expected to promote all-around ties between the two countries, especially in people-to-people exchange. -VNA