Vietnam sees a great opportunity to develop its agribusiness sector thanks to recent positive improvements in the economy and business environment, according to the Business Monitor International (BMI).

Under a report released by BMI, Vietnam’s agriculture sector holds strong growth opportunities to speed up its growth in terms of production, exports and retail sales, especially for the country’s traditional products such as rice, coffee, livestock, and dairy sectors.

However, Vietnam is facing growing competition in its key markets, and the fulfillment of its promising potential will only be achieved if the country steps up its competitiveness and improves both products quality and supply chain efficiency, the report said.

Vietnam’s economic growth over the past decade witnessed many ups and downs due to tumultuous periods of high inflation and fluctuation in the exchange rate of Vietnamese dong, which weighed on competitiveness for its exports.

However, in 2013, Vietnam’s economy reached an important turning-point as the Government pushed a series of policies aiming at maintaining price stability and further addressing macroeconomic imbalances in its economy.

The Vietnamese Government also demonstrated its determination in restructuring state businesses, while further supporting private areas through issuing tax incentive policies and enhancing investment in infrastructure development.

The country is eager to attract foreign investment into a host of sectors , including agriculture. Foreign direct investment (FDI) in agriculture is currently very modest, accounting for only 1-3 percent of the country's total FDI .

Not only hoping to lure more FDI, Vietnam also plans to raise the agricultural sector’s production and business efficiency in the coming time.

The government also encourages its economic sectors to increase the public-private partnership (PPP) programmes in various agriculture subsectors, such as cultivation, breeding and seafood industry.

BMI forecasted that Vietnam’s rice production, cattle and poultry farming and milk industry are likely to grow by more than 10 percent between 2012 and 2017.

Vietnam's export outlook also looks promising, as the country is relatively competitive compared with its traditional competitors, namely Thailand, Indonesia, India and Brazil. Thanks to its efforts, Vietnam is now one of the world’s leading countries in exporting coffee and rice.

BMI said that order to retain its growth, Vietnam needs to boost quality and productivity in the agriculture industry by applying new technologies in agricultural production, further issuing strict regulations to ensure food safety, and setting up a brand name for goods.

If the measures are implemented successfully, they will help increase value of Vietnam’s exports, thus increasing their competitiveness in the world market.-VNA