Shrimp processing for export (Source: VNA)

HCM City (VNA) – Attracting investment to expand production and upgrade technology is crucial in developing food processing, heard a workshop to promote investment in the industry held in Ho Chi Minh City on November 15 by the Ministry of Industry and Trade.

Vietnam’s food processing industry has developed strongly in recent years. The country’s annual food consumption value is estimated at about 15 percent of the GDP, and in the last five years, processed food consumption has increased by 9.68 percent a year, and 6.66 percent for the consumption of beverages.

In the first 10 months of 2018, the production index of processed food and beverage industry had a year-on-year growth rate of some 8 percent.

Food and beverages account for the highest proportion in Vietnamese consumers’ monthly spending, at 35 percent.

These figures show Vietnam is a high potential consumer market for processed food and beverages.

Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Do Thang Hai said the Government has prioritised the processing of agro-fishery-forestry products, with the focus on increasing the proportion of key farm produce and seafood and applying international standards in the production and processing.

Vietnam has also participated in international integration via the signing of economic deals with other countries, which have opened up a broad market for local enterprises, including those operating in food processing, Hai noted.

He added that agreements which soon come into effect such as the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) and the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) will help Vietnam’s products expand around the world.

Regarding investment policies, Vu Van Chung, deputy head of the Foreign Investment Department, stated that Vietnam had issued the Investment Law with numerous incentives for foreign investors.

The Ministry of Industry and Trade has worked with the Ministries of Planning and Investment, and Agriculture and Rural Development, as well as local agencies to support investors who want to pour capital into the country’s food processing industry, Chung affirmed.-VNA