The manufacturing of parts is fundamental to the growth of all industries including motorbike, automotive and electronics, the managing director of Reed Tradex Co said.

Chainarong Limpkittisin was speaking at the opening ceremony for three exhibitions on support industries held on Sept. 15 in Hanoi.

Chainarong said a healthy parts-making sector will help Vietnam reduce import costs, enhance the efficiency of its productivity and improve product value, thereby strengthen the country's economy as a whole.

The Vietnamese Government has provided increasing support over the years to local parts' makers. However, it is necessary for domestic manufacturers to further upgrade machinery and access to advanced technologies to better meet demand, he said.

The Reed Tradex-hosted Vietnam Manufacturing Expo, along with the Industrial Components and Subcontracting Vietnam Expo and the fourth Vietnam-Japan Exhibition on Support Industries would help parts' manufacturers find the technologies they need, as well as future customers, Chainarong said.

Difficulties in purchasing parts are one of biggest challenges facing Japanese enterprises in Vietnam, said Takezo Yanagida, executive vice president of the Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO) in Hanoi, which organised the fourth Vietnam-Japan Exhibition on Support Industries.

A recent JETRO survey found that the ratio of components purchased by Japanese companies in Vietnam was far lower than in other ASEAN countries.

As a result, enterprises were forced to import parts from other nations in the region such as Japan, Thailand and China. That has weakened competition of firms finished products, as well as reduced Vietnam's trade turnover, Yanagida said.

He said he hoped the fourth Vietnam-Japan Exhibition on Support Industries will make an effective contribution to developing the Vietnamese support industries, and boosting cooperation between Vietnamese and Japanese parts manufacturers.

Meanwhile, Nguyen Van Suu, vice chairman of the Hanoi People's Committee , said the three events will not only help parts producers expand their operations but also give State authorities the chance to review the role and status of the sector as a whole. The State will then be able to draw up strategies to further assist the sector.

The three expos will end on Sept. 17.

Meanwhile, the Centre for the Promotion of Imports from developing countries (CBI), an affiliate of the Netherlands' Ministry of Foreign Affairs, introduced its Engineering Export Coaching Programme to Vietnamese industrial exporters at the Vietnam Manufacturing Expo.

Under the programme, companies will receive individual support by means of on-site consultancy, training schemes, market information, trade-fair participation and business-to-business activities.

Depending on specific needs, they will receive support in the fields of business development, certification and product-improvement. Over three to five years, SME exporters would be able to improve their competitiveness in European markets, CBI said. /.