Conference seeks ways to boost Vietnam - Barcelona business connection hinh anh 1At the event (Photo: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – A trade conference connecting firms of Vietnam and Spain’s Barcelona region was held in Hanoi on November 12.

The event, jointly held by the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) and the Port of Barcelona, created a chance for businesses of the two sides to meet and seek cooperation.

According to the VCCI, investors from Spain have paid increasing attention to Vietnam with their strengths in renewable energy, infrastructure, tourism, high technology, construction and architecture.

Vietnam is Spain’s leading trade partner among the ASEAN countries. In the past 10 years, two-way trade increased 15 percent a year, hitting over 3 billion USD in 2017. The two sides aim to lift the figure to 5 billion USD by 2020.

VCCI Vice Chairman Hoang Quang Phong said the countries’ achievements over the years are remarkable but still modest. Hence, Vietnam welcomes businesses from Barcelona to explore its market, since the region is the most dynamic in Spain and among the four largest industrial cities in Europe.

Barcelona sees five maritime routes which link with 18 ports in Vietnam, providing logistics and transport solutions for firms of Vietnam and other countries in Asia, the US, and North African region.

Phong expressed his hope that the two sides’ entrepreneurs will be able to find cooperation chances through the event, especially in the fields that Vietnam is seeking investment, including new energy development, renewable energy, supporting industry and tourism.

For her part, President of the Port of Barcelona Merce Conesa said it is the leading port in terms of economic value in the region, accounting for 70 percent of transport in Catalonia.

In 2017, the port witnessed the largest increase in value of goods in Europe. As many as 500 businesses are operating in the port, generating about 3.53 billion EUR (nearly 4 billion USD), or 1.7 percent of Spain’s gross domestic product.

The hosts were informed that in 2017, goods imported from or manufactured in Vietnam totalling 490 million EUR went through the port, while exports to the country worth only 11 million EUR.

Vietnam exports coffee, frozen fish and construction materials while importing chemicals, foodstuff, and biofuel from Spain, Conesa noted.

She underlined that the port is looking to enhance connection with Vietnamese firms in logistics for common development.

Logistics sector has recorded stable growth among Vietnam’s services over the years, with about 1,300 domestic firms. -VNA