Int'l Cooperation

Last updated: Tuesday, March 26, 2019


Vietnam, Greece Promoting Business Cooperation

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2018

More than 20 Greek companies operating in industries such as food (olive oil, candy, nutritional cereals, milk, chocolate), agricultural products (fresh fruits, canned fruit), beverages, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, perfumes, infrastructure, building materials, energy, real estate investment, car parts and textiles, led by the Hellenic Federation of Enterprises (SEV) and the Athens Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Greece (ACCI), took part in the Vietnam - Greece Business Forum in Hanoi.

The forum was hosted by Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) to introduce market intelligence and promote business linkages between the two countries.

According to Dr Doan Duy Khuong, Vice President of VCCI, Vietnam and Greece have a long tradition of friendship and cooperation. In the context of the world economic situation, bilateral trade turnover between Vietnam and Greece has made remarkable progress, increasing steadily in the past years, from VND196 million in 2015 to VND335 million in 2017; however, it is still shy of the potential of both countries.

"Vietnam and Greece are two countries located on two continents, but have many similarities, have important geopolitical positions and have a long history. These factors are favourable conditions for further strengthening economic and trade cooperation between the two sides," said Dr Khuong.

Greece has a well-developed manufacturing industry, with its shipping industry ranking top position in the world. Vietnam and Greece have exchanged and cooperated in this field, and are currently in the process of negotiating a cooperation agreement on shipping. It can be said that this is the highest potential cooperation field which, if implemented, will become a major driving force in boosting economic relations between the two countries.

According to Dr Khuong, the current Greek economy has made positive changes and is gradually recovering and regaining growth momentum. The approval of the Vietnam - EU Free Trade Area (EVFTA) in the near future will also contribute to the creation of a legal corridor and opportunities to promote trade between the two countries. Therefore, in the coming time, it will be a good opportunity for the two countries to expand their cooperation in the fields that are not yet fully exploited.

"It can be said that this is the golden time for Vietnam and Greece to work together to bring good traditional relations between the two countries to new heights, especially economic - trade - investment. The two sides need to step up the exchange and trade of strong products in the fields both parties have demand and potential for development such as shipping and logistic, shipbuilding, seaport exploitation, tourism and agro-processing, said Dr Khuong.

To do this, Dr Khuong said, in addition to the support of the two Governments, the efforts of the business community are very necessary. As a bridge connecting the business community of Vietnam and the world, VCCI has always been the leader, actively developing strategies and supporting enterprises in the investment business.

According to Mr Terens Nikolaos Quick, Deputy Foreign Minister of Greece, Vietnam and Greece are moving in the right direction to promote cooperation between the two countries. Hopefully after this forum, there will be at least 15 contracts signed. The Greek delegation came to Vietnam with the purpose of promoting cooperation, and promoting investment in areas where Greece has a lot of potential and experience such as water transport (currently up to 80 percent of cargo companies the world are owned by Greek people); tourism cooperation (one of the most developed areas of Greece), infrastructure facilities (Greece has a team of experienced engineers and high qualifications, meet the complex projects); cosmetics, and food industry.

"Greece currently has privatisation programmes that promote economic growth, especially with GDP growth (in 2018, an increase of two percent), attracting foreign investment from Greece is also very promising. In order to promote bilateral trade relations, it is necessary to promote long-term cooperation," said Mr Terens Nikolaos Quick.

Konstantinos Bitsios, Vice President of the SEV, said that the SEV is one of the largest federations in Greece, with a large number of big corporations having trade with many major corporations in the world.

"There are many foreign investors coming to Vietnam, promising great potential for development. Vietnam's economic reform and investment environment has helped the economy to grow strongly. We look forward to building relationships with many Vietnamese enterprises, setting up cooperative frameworks, to promote trade, investment cooperation between the two sides. Greece is a competitive gateway for Vietnamese businesses to enter the European market," said Mr Konstantinos Bitsios.

On this occasion, VCCI signed a cooperation agreement with the SEV and the Athens Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) to seek new businesses opportunities to elevate relations between the two countries.

Anh Mai

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