Vietnam has emerged as one of the world most potential market for beer with great attraction to foreign investors, said the latest report in food and beverage of the Business Monitor International (BMI).

BMI, a wholly independent, London-based company, specialized in the analysis of global emerging markets since its foundation in 1984, forecast that the alcoholic drink sales in Vietnam will increase by 50.6 percent from now to 2013 with the revenue is expected to increase 16 percent a year.

According to the report, consumption of beer made up 98 percent of alcoholic drinks sales in 2008 and the figure is forecast to increase 50.7 percent this year and soft drink is expected to rise by 37 percent.

Many foreign beverage companies are seeking ways to enter Vietnam or raise their market share there, said the BMI.

Denmark ’s Carlsberg has announced its plan to acquire 50 percent of stake in central Vietnam ’s Hue Brewery Company after it increased its shares at the Hanoi Beer-Alcohol-Beverage Company (Habeco) from 16.07 percent to 30 percent.

Meanwhile, the Coca-Cola plans to invest about 200 million USD in Vietnam in the next three years.

Crown Holdings Inc. of the US , the world’s third largest metal packaging producer, also plans to invest 25 million USD in installing a production line of cans for soft drinks in the southern province of Dong Nai .

Additionally, PepsiCo, Diageo, San Miguel, SABMiller, S&N, Heineken, Budweiser, Kronenbourg and Bitburger strengthened their market shares by investing in new technology and production lines.

In the race to gain more market shares, local beverage companies, including the Saigon Beer-Alcohol-Beverage Corporation (Sabeco), which holds 35 percent of the market share, and Habeco are exerting efforts to expand businesses and raise competitiveness.

According to the Vietnam Alcohol, Beer and Beverage Association, the beverage sector is forecast to grow 15 percent this year. If the forecast become true, the sector will have the highest growth rate among the country’s industries.

Vietnam beverage products have been exported to Japan , Indonesia and the Republic of Korea . Especially, fruit juices and nutritional drinks gained remarkable market share in the Netherlands , the US , the UK and Canada./.