The speakers at the seminar were particularly focused on providing insights into the business segments where there are openings for enhanced trade and investment, mutually benefiting the economies in both regions.
Ta Hoang Linh of the Ministry Trade Promotion Agency opened the event with a review of import and export activity between the two regions over the past few years before transferring the floor to other speakers who introduced other topics.
Linh noted that in general the track record of commercial trade between the two regions has been lacklustre because of the great geographical distance, high transportation costs and vast cultural differences.
Tran Dinh Van, former trade counsellor to Chile, in turn gave an in-depth assessment of competitive environment in South America countries, stating that consumers are very quality oriented in their purchases.
Van noted that they prefer and are willing to pay more for products they perceive to have superior quality and have little to no interest in buying cheap junk.
The South American market is already saturated with low quality products from China, India and Bangladesh so it would not be worthwhile for Vietnamese businesses to try to compete solely on price in the distant market.
Van then went on to talk about the opportunities for joining the value-added supply chains in countries like Peru and Columbia that are experiencing exponential growth, saying the time is ripe for Vietnamese businesses.