Vietnam was seen as a attractive destination for Japanese investors, although the northeast Asian nation has changed its investment policy in Southeast Asia due to post-March disaster challenges.

According to a recent survey by Japan’s Nikkei Economic Times, the number of Japanese firms investing in Vietnam in 2010 rose to 1,000, from 200 in 2006.

The survey showed that approximate 70 percent of Japanese businesses interviewed considered Vietnam as the most attractive destination, surpassing Thailand, Indonesia and India .

The result of a survey made by the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) in 2010 showed that of Japan 's total overseas investment, Vietnam ranked third in the medium term as a country with high potential for foreign trade, and the fourth in the long term.

Hideo Naito, Head of Department for Investment Finance of Energy, Water Resource and Infrastructure at JBIC, attributed Vietnam ’s magnetism to cheap labour, skilled workers, a strong development outlook for the domestic market and capacity to export to third countries.

Vietnam was also considered a market for potential domestic consumption by Japanese firms.

Marubeni group has cooperated with the Dong Nai Food Corporation (Dofico) with an ambition of becoming the number one in production and distribution of farm produce, food and feed in the Vietnamese market.

Earlier in May, the Japanese firm signed a strategic cooperation agreement with the Vietnam Garment and Textile Group (Vinatex) to increase exports of Vietnam ’s apparel products to Japan .

According to the Ministry of Planning and Investment’s Foreign Investment Department , Japan had by August run 1,560 valid projects with a total registered capital of nearly 22 billion USD, ranking fourth among 92 nations and territories directly investing in Vietnam .

Japan’s investment projects were mainly in the areas of industries and supporting industries, plus high tech investments in line with the Vietnamese Government’s policy./.