Foreign investors keen on retail sector

A large number of foreign investors are expressing their keen interest in Vietnam’s retail market, according to a report of The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) issued on February 27.

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EIU forecast that foreign companies will continue expanding their business activities in Vietnam in the coming years.  

For example, Hennes & Mauritz (H&M), Sweden-based multinational clothing retailer, announced it would open the first retail store on 2,000 square meters in the capital city of Hanoi sometime this year.

The retail sector has seen a large number of foreign investors coming to explore opportunities in the retail sector.

For example, the first store of Spain’s fashion brand Zara in Vietnam was inaugurated last year. Meanwhile, U.S.-based Gap clothing retailer and Spain’s Mango clothing design and manufacturing company are already present here in the local market.

Japanese supermarket chain operator Aeon Company Limited has recently decided to become a strategic shareholder of the Fivimart and Citimart, two supermarket chains whose numerous outlets are currently active in HCMC and Hanoi.  

Furthermore, Takashimaya, one of Japan's leading department store operators, has inaugurated its first shopping center in downtown HCMC while South Korea's Lotte Group has mapped out a plan to launch around 60 new supermarkets in the country between now and 2020.

It came as no surprise that foreign enterprises have paid increasing attention to the country’s retail sector as it posted growth of a strong 13% per year during the 2012-2016 period.

Local consumer spending is forecast to rise sharply in the next five years as Vietnam has a population of around 94 million people, one-third of them aged under 35.

According to EIU, per capita spending will rise from US$1,450 last year to US$1,840 in 2021.

Saigon Times

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