Accelerating trade promotion to boost exports

Trade promotion is an effective measure to support businesses in boosting exports, according to economic experts.

2011 was a successful year for the export sector with earnings of nearly US$100 billion. To obtain this result, Vietnamese businesses have accelerated exports, trade promotion and advertisement, and built trust among international clients.

Direct access to markets

The Hanoi Trade Corporation (Hapro) is a typical example of businesses successful in boosting exports. Its products, including handicrafts, agricultural products and garments, have been exported to 70 countries.

Hapro General Director Nguyen Huu Thang says one of the requirements to successfully and effectively penetrate the world market is to regularly conduct research and establish ties with foreign countries. In the integration process, businesses should directly contact foreign groups and retailers, instead of using the traditional method.

Despite economic slowdown in the world, the corporation has maintained export growth and its reputation in the world market has been promoted thanks to its efforts and experience, Thang says.

He adds that to keep up export growth, the corporation has established diversified market systems to meet consumer demand in different countries.

In addition to trade promotion, taking advantage of cooperation with other countries is an important factor to boost exports. Vietnam-Chile trade ties are a case in point.

Vietnamese ambassador to Chile Ha Thi Ngoc Ha says Vietnam-Chile economic ties have developed strongly in recent years. The two countries have signed a free trade agreement, providing a good opportunity for both countries’ businesses to boost exports, and two-way trade value increased by 41 percent over the past two years.

Ambassador Ha says Chile has abundant natural and mineral resources and fir timber, which are important input materials for Vietnam. Hopefully, that import-export value will continue to rise in 2012.

Businesses from both countries should further promote trade and advertisement activities as the two countries’ potentials are great, Ha says.

Different measures

Trade promotion provides more chances for Vietnam to strengthen exports. In recent years, the country has gained significant achievements in boosting exports to EU markets.

Pham Sanh Chau, Vietnamese Ambassador to Belgium, said the country’s export growth to the EU increases by 50 percent. The achievements are attributed to businesses’ active approach to accessing foreign markets and linking with businesses and counsellors overseas.

Vietnam has taken part in a series of trade events, including the European Seafood Exposition (ESE) in Brussels, Belgium, and the World Shoe Accessories (WSA) Show in Las Vegas, the US. It has also organised meetings for US steel producers and conducted fact-finding tours and trade promotion activities in Poland and Belgium.

However, Vietnamese export promotion in the EU market has faced a number of challenges caused by significant technical barriers.

Ambassador Chau said in order to promote exports and minimize anti-dumping lawsuits in major markets such as the EU, businesses should prepare all technical and legal plans to deal with the increasing trend toward trade protection.

To maintain export growth in the coming years, businesses should continue to improve their competitive edge and apply advanced technologies to make high quality products with beautiful designs in line with customer tastes. They should expand sales networks, protect and raise their trademarks.