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Vietnam - Canada’s gateway to Southeast Asia: Conference

20/10/2023    29

A conference has been held in Edmonton city in Canada’s Alberta province to discuss the role of Vietnam as a gateway for Canada to enter Southeast Asia during the implementation of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).

Participants assessed the level of awareness and utilisation of the CPTPP and sought a support and coordination mechanism to help Canadian and Vietnamese businesses maximise benefits from the pact as Canada is advancing its Indo-Pacific Strategy.

Evan Buie, Trade Commissioner at Global Affairs Canada's Regional Office for Alberta and Northwest Territories described Vietnam as an important trade partner of Canada and Alberta, highlighting that Vietnam has been Canada's number one partner in the ASEAN region since 2015. He noted that Canada's top exports to Vietnam include agricultural products, minerals, metals and industrial machinery. 

Buie said that Global Affairs Canada is coordinating with the Vietnam Trade Office in Canada to organise programmes to help businesses adjust their products and services to suit export markets, especially the Vietnamese market. The Global Affairs Canada has a network of offices in 160 cities, including Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, he said.

Vietnamese Trade Counselor in Canada Tran Thu Quynh said that Alberta recorded high growth in exports to Vietnam after five years of CPTPP implementation.

She highlighted efforts of Vietnam in improving infrastructure system and introduced Vietnam's investment attraction policy in comparison with ASEAN countries.

Alberta currently exports many products such as oil and gas, machinery and especially agricultural products to Vietnam, while importing garments, electronics and footwear from the Southeast Asian country.

According to Director of Trade at Edmonton Global Manisha Arora, with the effective exploitation of CPTPP, businesses from both sides will have a better understanding of each other's product structure and further strengthen their trade and investment relations.

ASEAN is currently the fifth largest economy and also the most dynamic economic region in the world. The region is predicted to be the world's consumption centre by 2030 thanks to its market size.

Arora said Vietnam has been an important partner of Canada in ASEAN for the past 50 years and is the leading destination in ASEAN for Canadian goods with a 7% annual growth rate over the past 30 years. Vietnam is considered as a gateway for Canadian companies that wish to develop in this region.

TB Nguyen, Director of Canada-ASEAN Business Council (CABC), cited the agency's latest report as saying that Canadian businesses consider Vietnam as the country with the most opportunities in the ASEAN region, because it is emerging as a new hub for trade, investment and innovation.

Businesses planning to establish their facilities in Vietnam such as Customer Maps or Senescene Life also assessed that Vietnam is a dynamic and potential market. This is the time for Alberta businesses to seize business opportunities in Vietnam, and take advantage of Vietnam to enter ASEAN, they said./.      

Source: Vietnam Plus