Vietnam and India have plenty of room for expanding cooperation in trade and investment, with the two countries aiming to push bilateral trade this year to US$15 billion, up 15.3 percent from 2021, as stated at the second Vietnam - India Business Forum held in Ho Chi Minh City on Thursday.
The annual forum, co-organized by the Indian Consulate General in the city, the Indian Chamber of Commerce, and the municipal Investment and Trade Promotion Center, attracted more than 300 businesses participating in both face-to-face and online forms.
The event focused on cooperation in commerce and investment between Vietnam and India in the six fields, including engineering, supporting industries, digital, e-commerce, retail and agricultural products.
Indian Ambassador to Vietnam Pranay Verma told the forum that economic and trade ties continue to be important pillars of the two countries’ comprehensive strategic partnership.
The two-way trade between the two countries increased sharply from $200 million in 2020 to more than $13 billion in 2021, posting a year-on-year increase of 36 percent.
This year, the two countries aim to bring the trade value to $15 billion, or 15.36 percent higher than last year.
As of last month, India ranked 25th out of 140 countries and territories investing in Vietnam, with 315 valid projects worth more than $918 million, mainly in the fields of manufacturing and processing, electricity production and distribution, and mining.
Meanwhile, Vietnam had nine projects totally valued at over $6 million in the South Asian country, focusing on wholesale and retail.
However, Ambassador Verma noted that bilateral trade and investment ties in the past time are yet to commensurate with the potentials of the two nations.
The current period is the perfect time for the two sides to work on promoting their cooperation toward better effectiveness, as they both are emerging from the shadow of COVID-19 and are focusing on a rapid economic recovery, the ambassador pointed out.
With their own competitive advantages, Vietnam and India have emerged as the new destinations of many global supply chains, which has reflected in the fact that both countries are receiving large sources of foreign investment, Sai Gon Giai Phong (Liberated Saigon) newspaper cited Vo Van Hoan, deputy chairman of the city's administration.
Such a context has been creating advantages for both countries in those international supply chains, so the bilateral close cooperation will help each country to receive more foreign capital and make deeper participation in such chains, Hoan said.
Ambassador Verma emphasized that the policy similarities as well as the spirit of self-reliance of the two countries form a foundation for them to tap their potential for cooperation in trade and investment, the Vietnam News Agency cited the offical as saying.
There are many cooperation areas where businesses of both countries can focus, including iron, steel, footwear and cotton yarn, through which the two sides may deepen penetration in the corresponding global supply chains, said Sumita Dawra, the Indian Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade.
Among other cooperative fields in trade and investment are agricultural production and food processing, she added.
The forum was part of a series of activities organized by the Consulate General of India in the city this year to celebrate the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between India and Vietnam, as well as the 75th anniversary of India’s Independence Day.