The Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) will carry out a series of extensive programmes to penetrate deeper into the African market in an effort to achieve a 20 percent growth in export turnover to the continent in 2011.

According to Ly Quoc Hung, Director of the MoIT’s African, West Asian and South Asian Markets Department, trade promotions in Africa will focus on creating legislation and the way forward for business activities.

Top priority will be given to strengthening bilateral cooperation with various foreign countries, putting into action the outcomes of inter-governmental committees meetings, reviewing the implementation of signed agreements and holding negotiations for the signing of new agreements.

Key trade promotion programmes will target Kenya and Egypt and the fibre markets in Mali and Burkina Faso . The necessary conditions for businesses to join fairs and exhibitions will be introduced, including fairs in Senegal and Algeria , a plastics fair in Morocco and an exhibition of Vietnamese goods in Nigeria .

In addition, Vietnam will invite delegations of African importers to participate in local fairs and exhibitions as well as meet Vietnamese exporters in Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi .

A project to promote the capacity of businesses to speed up exports to Africa is considered a breakthrough as it defines nine major markets and three key groups of commodities, namely rice, garments and footwear.

According to the MoIT, Vietnam now has trade relations with 53 African countries with the total export turnover to this market reaching over 2.1 billion USD in 2010, up 30 percent against the previous year.

Together with trade relations, Vietnamese-African industrial cooperation has developed well. By the end of 2010, Vietnam had begun many large-scale oil and gas exploration and exploitation projects in Africa with a total investment capital of more than 360 million USD.

Besides oil and gas, Vietnam has also implemented a 800 million USD project to build a DAP fertiliser factory in Morocco and a telecoms project in Mozambique. /.