A modest number of modern retail channels has made Vietnam a promising land for the development of the sector and country’s economy in general.

So far, Vietnam ’s retail system has been expanded with improved service quality and variety. However, modern distribution channels have been limited compared to other regional countries.

According to the US Business Consultancy Services RNCOS, Vietnam ’s modern retail channels make up only nearly 30 percent of the market in 2013, while the figure is 48 percent in the Philippines , 55 percent in Indonesia , 66 percent in Malaysia , 76 percent in Australia , 99 percent in Hong Kong ( China ) and 100 percent in Singapore .

Statistics have shown that Vietnam ’s retail sector earned 2,286 trillion VND (108.8 billion USD) in the first 11 months of this year, up 12.5 percent year on year, representing a growth of 5.54 percent in real terms.

Total turnover of the sector is expected to hit 2,617 trillion VND (124.6 billion USD) for the whole year, a rise of 12.59 percent over last year’s figure.

The Ministry of Industry and Trade has estimated that by 2020, the country will have between 1,200 to 1,300 supermarkets, 550 more than the current number.

Meanwhile, about 180 trade centres and 157 shopping complexes will be opened, up 200.

During the recent 2013 Vietnam Retail Forum, retailers pointed out that combination between modern retail channels and e-commerce is now a rising trend in the world.

According to Dinh Thi My Loan, Chairwoman of the Association of Vietnam Retailers, Vietnam is entering the digital era with high technology. This is a good chance for retailers to attract buyers from the whole society.

Meanwhile, Nguyen Thanh Hung, Vice Chairman of the E-commerce Association, said that Vietnam’s e-commerce has developed stably with about 700 million USD in annual sales, based on estimations that a customer in Vietnam purchases online about 30 USD worth of goods every year.

At the same time, Master Card representatives predicted that e-commerce sales may reach 7-8 billion USD by 2017.-VNA