US companies planning to expand investment in Vietnam hinh anh 1Several US businesses have expressed their intention to expand their investment and business activities in Vietnam (Photo: VNA)

Washington D.C. (VNA) - An online discussion took place recently in Washington D.C. to look into post-COVID-19 investment opportunities throughout ASEAN, with some companies saying they will soon announce investment and business expansion plans in Vietnam.

Held by the US-ASEAN Business Council (USABC) and Ernst & Young on July 15, the discussion saw the presence of representatives from the US Department of State, some ASEAN embassies, and more than 100 US companies and business associations in industries such as finance, energy, technology, e-commerce, health care, and insurance.

Vietnamese Ambassador to the US Ha Kim Ngoc highlighted the favourable factors for US investors in Vietnam, including the two countries’ flourishing comprehensive partnership, the free trade agreements Vietnam has joined and, especially, its success in fighting COVID-19 and the Government’s resolve to attract foreign investment and bolster the country’s role in restructuring global supply chains.

He noted that Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc recently set up a working group to promote foreign investment, adding that the country will resume several commercial air routes and facilitate the entry of foreign experts, investors, and skilled staff.

Vietnam, other regional countries, and the US are scrutinising economic cooperation initiatives, including the Economic Prosperity Network, to encourage joint projects in manufacturing hi-tech products and developing the digital economy, Ngoc said.

USABC President Alex Feldman and representatives from US companies expressed their appreciation of the investment opportunities available in ASEAN and Vietnam, emphasising the bloc’s important standing in the Indo-Pacific region and that ASEAN has become the fourth largest trade partner of and the leading investment destination for the US.

US companies said that in the time to come, investors would further consider the Government’s response to external shocks before making investment decisions, and Vietnam’s achievements in controlling COVID-19 and boosting economic recovery efforts have been positively assessed by foreign investors.

Others proposed that Vietnam and other ASEAN countries continue to improve the business climate, reform administrative procedures, enhance transparency, issue concrete support policies for businesses, and pay greater attention to human resources and infrastructure development.

The USABC added that it is ready to coordinate with Vietnam to successfully organise the Indo-Pacific business forum, scheduled to take place in the country later this year./.