A workshop on business potential and opportunities in Saudi Arabia and Middle East markets for import-export enterprises in the Mekong Delta took place on Dec. 9, in the southern city of Can Tho.

The workshop aims to help Vietnamese businesses and Mekong Delta businesses in particular to gain a better understanding of markets in the Middle East .

Taking part in the workshop, the enterprises were provided with useful market information, including foreign trade policies, trade barriers, import-export activities, the investment environment and trade and political relations.

The workshop also introduced requirements of Halal certification, which is recognition that the products are permissible under Islamic law and the required conditions for exporting to these markets.

According to Ly Quoc Hung, head of the African, West Asian and South Asian Markets Department under the Ministry of Industry and Trade, two-way trade between Vietnam and Saudi Arabia reached 745.5 million USD last year. The figure was expected to reach 1.1 billion USD this year, with 260 million USD from Vietnamese exports.

Two-way trade between Vietnam and Middle Eastern countries exceeded 3 billion USD in 2010. It is expected to reach 5 billion USD this year.

Vietnam has exported commodities such as aquatic products, garment and footwear, wood, computer and electronic components, rubber, handicrafts and agricultural products, machinery and equipment./.