Japan a key partner of Vietnam in trade and investment, with programs in place to bolster both.
Bilateral trade between Vietnam and Japan this year is expected to come in at $30 billion, $2 billion higher than in 2014, according to the Asia - Pacific Department at the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT), who added that in recent years the economic cooperation between the two countries had developed dramatically.
Japan is Vietnam’s third-largest export market, just after China and the US. The most commonly exported goods to Japan were textiles, footwear, handicrafts, wooden items, seafood, crude oil, computers, and electronic devices. Textiles alone brought in $2.7 billion to Vietnam in 2014 and are forecast at $3 billion this year. Japan is also one of the largest foreign direct investors in the country.
MoIT also recently held a Vietnam Business Forum in Japan for the first time, to bolster trade activities. Mr. Le An Hai, Deputy Director of the Asia - Pacific Department, told the gathering that Japan was one of Vietnam’s largest markets and has been an important partner of the country for many years.
He added that because there was great demand in Japan for imported goods, Vietnamese enterprises had to improve their monitoring of product quality and boost trade promotion efforts to better tap the potential of the Japanese market, especially given the Vietnam - Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (VJEPA) and the upcoming Trans - Pacific Partnership (TPP). Finally, he asked Vietnamese enterprises in Japan to cooperate with domestic enterprises so they can support the latter in investing in Japan.
In 2013 the Vietnam Entrepreneurs' Association in Japan was established, with 35 members. Most Vietnamese enterprises in Japan are of small-scale but there are also successful and prestigious enterprises that could assist other Vietnamese enterprises in penetrating into Japan.