Vietnam to be “promised land” for Japanese investors: PM hinh anh 1Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc (third, left, behind row) and other officials witness the exchange of cooperation documents between Vietnamese and Japanese businesses at the investment promotion conference in Tokyo on July 1 (Photo: VNA)

Tokyo (VNA) – An investment promotion conference was held in Tokyo on July 1 where Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said Vietnam will be the “promised land” for Japanese investors.

The event, part of PM Phuc’s visit to Japan, was attended by representatives of about 1,200 businesses from both countries.

In his speech, the Vietnamese government leader said Vietnam has stable politics and society, trade advantages, and an important geo-political and economic position in the region and the world.

With an economic growth rate of 7.08 percent in 2018, Vietnam was one of the fastest growing countries in the world. With export revenue approximating 500 billion USD, it was also among the 25 largest trading economies, he noted, adding that Vietnam attracted more than 35 billion USD of foreign investment in 2018.

The PM also highlighted the signing of the free trade agreement and the investment protection agreement between Vietnam and the EU on June 30.

He added Vietnam is striving to make breakthroughs in institutional reforms, governance capacity improvement, environmental standard upgrade, human resources training, along with infrastructure and logistics development, so as to promote its competitiveness and create the best possible environment for investors.

[Photos: Prime Minister Phuc's activities in Japan]

PM Phuc suggested Japanese firms invest in certain fields in Vietnam, including processing; manufacturing; clean and hi-tech agriculture – which he described as an “export gold mine”; and energy, especially green and renewable energy, which is in great demand in the country.

Another potential field is tourism, he said, noting that Vietnam ranks sixth among the 10 tourist destinations with the fastest growth rates in the world as the number of foreign visitors to the country increases by 30 percent annually.

Tens of billions of USD has been invested in this industry in the Southeast Asian nation, which is forecast to possibly become a “tourism giant” in the world. However, Japanese investors are somewhat lagging behind in the development of resort and tourism areas here, he said.

At the event, PM Phuc particularly asked Japanese investors to increase investing in infrastructure development, especially key facilities, in Vietnam. He also suggested them pay attention to the Vietnamese retail market, which is valued at over 150 billion USD, with a population of nearly 100 million and a fast rising middle class.

The Government leader also described digital trade as a hugely potential area in Vietnam, whose internet economy is worth 9 billion USD, expanded by 35 percent annually between 2015 and 2018, and accounts for 4 percent of the GDP – the highest rate among ASEAN economies. The value of the Vietnamese internet economy is predicted to hit 33 billion USD by 2025.

He stressed that the Vietnamese Government and all-level administrations will always listen to Japanese investors’ opinions so as to promptly address problems facing them and make the local investment climate more attractive to global investors, including those from Japan.

The Vietnamese Government considers Japanese businesses a leading partner in national development, PM Phuc added.

At the conference, PM Phuc and officials of the two countries witnessed the presentation of 32 investment certificates and memoranda of understanding on cooperation between Vietnamese localities and businesses and Japanese investors. The documents, worth over 8 billion USD in total, are in multiple spheres such as in real estate, infrastructure, retail services, apparel, high technology, energy, aviation, transportation, logistics, labour export, education and health care.

Also on July 1, PM Phuc attended a ceremony in Tokyo marking 25 years since the launch of the first Vietnam-Japan air route of the national flag carrier Vietnam Airlines.-VNA