US companies upbeat on investment opportunities in Vietnam

Many US companies see Vietnam as a manufacturing hub that provides services to increasingly wealthy consumers.

A Coca Cola factory in Viet Nam. The beverage giant was among companies joining the mission. — Photo

Senior executives from 52 US companies in the ‘biggest-ever’ US business mission to Viet Nam are discussing investment and sales opportunities in the country.

Chairman of the US-ASEAN Business Council (USABC) Ted Osius said the council was never as busy as it is now. Its services are in high demand because many US companies show great interest in the country.

He also said USABC representatives from other countries told him that they must act quickly because they were competing with Viet Nam. That was a way of saying Viet Nam has become a destination for growth and opportunities.

Rafael Frankel, Director of Public Policy at Meta, said the trip was the second time he had been to Viet Nam since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

He appreciates the diligence of the Vietnamese workforce and sees a bright prospect for growth in the country. As such, he revealed the intention to invest in Viet Nam’s digital economy and technological innovation in the short term.

The representative from the power giant AES Corporation said cooperation in the energy sector always lie at the heart of bilateral relations. He said AES-initiated projects would give a major boost to Vietnamese economic growth.

SpaceX, Netflix, Coca-Cola, and Boeing are among the companies joining the mission. Boeing said its discussions with officials would centre around airline sustainability, which involves decarbonisation efforts across the industry.

Deputy Chairman of the Vietnam Association of Foreign-Invested Enterprises Nguyen Van Toan said the visit would herald waves of US investments in the country in the years to come.

He said Viet Nam is appealing to foreign investors because of its economic and political stability, and a favourable investment climate. However, the entry into force of the Global Minimum Corporate Tax would cancel out the tax incentives that it has laid down for years.

For that reason, the Vietnamese government is developing new favourable policies to keep the investment climate favourable to foreign investors, preparing for the institution of the global tax regime.

“US companies are on the lookout for suppliers and investment destinations to create new value chains. Viet Nam is an ideal candidate for their investments,” said Toan.

On the downside, the deputy chairman underlined some obstacles ahead, including the weak ties between local and foreign companies, the underdevelopment of the support industries, and an infrastructure system that still has room for improvement.

USABC’s representative in Viet Nam Vu Tu Thanh said some companies see Viet Nam as a manufacturing hub that provides services to increasingly wealthy consumers. They were also impressed with its annual economic growth of 8 per cent.

Director of Economica Vietnam Le Duy Binh said US investments would improve Viet Nam’s access to cutting-edge technologies whereas US companies have high environmental and social standards, which work in line with the country’s development strategy.

What Viet Nam has to do is to lay down more favourable conditions for the exodus of US companies to the country.

Minister of Planning and Investment Nguyen Chi Dung said the Vietnamese and the US economies are mutually supplementary and still have ample room for cooperation.

He said Viet Nam would push ahead with its favourable policies to improve the investment climate. He also said US investors could turn to his ministry for support when they do their business in the country.

Viet Nam News