A forum discussing how to optimise supply chains and competitiveness for enterprises in Vietnam takes place in Hanoi on August 21. (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA)
– A forum discussing how to optimise supply chains and competitiveness for enterprises in Vietnam took place in Hanoi on August 21.

The event was held by the Institute for Brand and Competitiveness Strategy (BCSI) in partnership with Portland State University from the United States.

Speaking at the forum, President of the BCSI Council Nguyen Van Nam said the concept of global supply chains is not new to Vietnamese companies. Since Vietnam’s shift from a centrally planned to market economy three decades ago, the country has set up trade relations with more than 180 countries and drawn investment from over 100 countries.

However, most firms only participate in the secondary supply chain, so the products they make don’t have high added value, he said.

About 21 percent of small- and medium-sized enterprises in Vietnam joined the global supply chain while the percentages in Thailand and Malaysia are 30 percent and 46 percent, respectively. Thus, Vietnamese enterprises are less likely to benefit from the spillover effects of FDI firms through the technology transfer, know-how and management skills, he added.

Jay Fortenberry, Lecturer at Portland State University and Chairman of the Fortenberry Group, said to optimise supply chains and improve competitiveness, Vietnamese businesses must better manage supply chain costs and customer demand.

It’s crucial that enterprises are in control of their customer services, the internationally-recognised leader in supply chain management noted.

Daniel Wong, Lecturer at Portland State University, said Vietnamese firms are pioneers in leveraging the industrial revolution 4.0. They have been applying advanced technology and IT solutions, and that means they are on the right track, he noted.

Besides these strengths, Vietnamese entrepreneurs still have many “gaps”, especially in terms of knowledge, as they lack specialists in their businesses. They should enhance management skills to better manage their company, Wong added.

Wong used to serve as Vice President of Logistics and Supply Chain Management at North Pacific and Director of Supply Chain process improvement at Longview Fibre Company in Longview, Washington, the US. –VNA