Laos and Cambodia are two promising markets for Vietnamese workers as Vietnamese businesses operate many projects in the two neighbouring countries, the Vietnam Economic Times has said.

According to statistics from 2011, Vietnam sent 87,000 workers overseas, including 3,500 to Laos and 3,300 to Cambodia .

At present, the Association of Vietnamese Investors in Cambodia has more than 200 members. They are mainly involved in agriculture, forestry, garments, consumer goods, telecoms, finance and banking.

In Cambodia ’s Battambang, KompongChnang and Takeo provinces, many Vietnamese businesses such as the Vietnam Rubber Group, the PetroVietnam Fertiliser and Chemicals Corporation, the Dinsen Vietnam Garments Company and the Dat Hoa Plastics Company all require large numbers of workers.

According to Vietnam ’s Labour Export Association, Southeast Asia used to be a secondary market for Vietnamese labour agencies. However, after the recent political instabilities in the Middle East, the labour market felt the crunch as less expensive markets like Malaysia and Taiwan no longer have a demand for workers. Nowadays Vietnam ’s labour agencies see a demand from other Southeast Asian countries for highly qualified workers, especially agricultural and chemical engineers.

In the Laotian market, Vietnamese workers are now finding it easier to find jobs in industrial zones, the mining industry, agro-forestry and consumption.

This market is new but close to Vietnam ’s consumer culture so is ideal for apprenticeships, said Duong Duc Manh, Training Director for the TXM Labour Export Company.

Experienced workers can be trained to develop the markets in four of our neighbouring countries, including Laos , Cambodia , Myanmar and Timor Leste, he added.

The Overseas Labour Management Department said that smaller markets, including Laos and Cambodia could employ 8,000-10,000 Vietnamese workers every year, or 10-15 percent of the country’s total annual overseas work force.

In 2012, the labour sector is targeting sending technicians, skilled workers and senior managers to these new markets.-VNA