The campaign “Vietnamese people use Vietnamese goods” has received a warm response from local enterprises and consumers since its launch by the Party’s Political Bureau in 2009.

Ninety percent of consumers in Ho Chi Minh City and 83 percent of Hanoians surveyed so far this year said they will use more Vietnamese goods.

Confidence in locally-made commodities has grown thanks to hundreds of trade fairs bringing Vietnamese goods to rural areas, and a scheme showcasing high-quality Vietnamese products across the country’s provinces.

Vu Kim Hanh, General Director of the Business Research Centre and Business Support Agency (BSA), said that the campaign has brought practical benefits for domestic businesspeople.

There are greater opportunities to promote their strengths in marketing strategies, market expansion, production line modernisation, and creation of new and premium products at a competitive price, meeting domestic demand and well suited for export.

She added that the campaign has left a strong impression on the public, changing people’s shopping habits and stimulating interest in domestic brand names.

Vietnamese products occupy up to 90 percent of space at big shopping malls, like Co.op Mart, Maximark, Citimart and foreign-invested supermarkets as Lotte Mart, Big C, and Metro.

However, Hanh also pointed out the difficulties that Vietnamese businesses encounter, including poor and ineffective competitiveness among retail businesses, poor supply and quality of products, and unremarkable packaging designs.

Weak management, substandard equipment, unprofessional sales staff and the commercial fraud situation in some businesses are attributed to discouraging domestic consumers from local products.

Hanh suggested that the People’s Committee at all levels pay due attention to intensifying communication campaigns, especially in rural areas, and gradually forming a buy-local consumer culture.

Nguyen Huu Thang, Chairman of the Management Board of Hanoi Trade Corporation, said that businesses not only need to improve their models and reduce production costs, but also need to understand consumer psychology and taste.

The People’s Committees should mobilise small businesses to work with producers and distributors to promote the consumption of Vietnamese goods in the local market.

The State will devise specific policies to support businesses in developing a modern retail system and promoting Vietnamese goods in traditional markets, which also requires the effort of market managers to prevent the import of goods with unknown origins, he added.

Nguyen Lam Vien, Vice President of the Business Association of High-Quality Vietnamese Goods, said that his Association is promoting a cooperative programme with the Department of Local Industry (Ministry of Industry and Trade) in order to connect rural industrial producers with the market.

The Association will pilot a programme to upgrade the district markets in seven provinces and cities in the southern and central regions.

The programme will also focus on promoting Vietnamese goods’ penetration into ASEAN and Chinese markets by enhancing links with multi-national trade commissions and business associations in Vietnam.-VNA