On 26 April in Hanoi, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Vietnam Economic Times co-organised the “Connection for Development Forum 2021”, themed “Seizing New Opportunities for Localities and Business”.
The event featured H.E. Pham Binh Minh, Deputy Prime Minister; H.E. Bui Thanh Son, Minister of Foreign Affairs; authorities of 63 provinces throughout Vietnam; ambassadors and representatives of diplomatic missions and international organisations; as well as more than 400 business leaders.
In his opening remarks, Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son stated that, in the coming time, the Government will continue to work closely with line ministries, localities and business communities, to contribute effectively to the successful implementation of Vietnam’s socio-economic development goals.
In his keynote speech, Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh noted that Vietnam should be proactively catching up with the fourth wave of FDI taking place globally amid fierce competition and the adverse impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. FDI attraction must be more selective with a specific focus on the main evaluation criteria such as quality, efficiency, technology and environmental protection.
The Government will also seek to prioritise investment in relation to infrastructure development, reduce transaction costs, and enhance competitiveness for businesses and investors, with a specific focus on strengthening transparency. Most notably, the Government will encourage further investment in education, science, and technology, with human and technological capacity anticipated to be the driving force behind growth over the coming decades.
On behalf of EuroCham, Vice Chairman Nguyen Hai Minh joined in the panel discussion themed “Opportunities and Challenges from the Movement of FDI Flows in the New Context”. Ms. Claudia Anselmi, Mr. Gianluca Fiume and Mr. Soren Roed Pederson – EuroCham Executive Committee members – also joined in the event.
Answering questions from VCCI Chairman Dr. Vu Tien Loc, Mr. Nguyen Hai Minh said that with the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) and the new Trade Strategy and Green Deal of the EU, businesses’ priority now is to improve understanding of the European standards for each locality. The EU-Vietnam Business Council that EuroCham and VCCI have established will connect our member companies, giving them a forum in which to build new relationships as well as share knowledge about the opportunities in their respective industries.
VCCI’s recent Provincial Competitiveness Index also shows that regions across Vietnam are improving their scores, in particular in the area of administrative reform. Going further and faster in this direction will help to encourage even more FDI from the EU. In terms of investment, capital from Europe is of high quality and focuses on advanced technology, infrastructure improvement and sustainable development. Hence, skilled labourers will be advantageous factors to attract investors' attention. Apart from Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, Hai Phong and Quang Ninh are also adaptive and meets these requirements of EU investors.