Vietnam - Austria Business Forum promotes mutual investment ties

VOV.VN - The Vietnam Ministry of Foreign Affairs in co-ordination with the Austrian Economic Chamber (WKO) has organised the Vietnam-Austria Business Forum in Vienna, featuring the participation of 45 Vietnamese and Austrian business leaders and representatives from various business associations.

The occasion is being held within the framework of "Vietnam Day in the Republic of Austria in 2022".

As part of his address at the forum, Foreign Minister Bui Thanh Son emphasised that the occasion, which took place at an important time, marked the 50th anniversary since the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries. In addition, it served as a practical opportunity for businesses of the two sides to actively exchange, explore, and promote co-operation projects, thereby contributing to promoting economic relations between the nation and Austria.

The Minister went on to affirm that the country boasts a vibrant economy, is becoming increasingly integrated into the global economy, and represents an attractive and reliable destination for economic, investment, and trade co-operation in the Asia-Pacific region.

Over recent years, largely due to the traditional and friendly relationship between the two sides, policies adopted by both Governments have also encouraged and created favourable conditions for firms to co-operate practically and effectively as a way of improving bilateral economic ties.

Since the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) officially came into force between Vietnam and the EU bloc, despite enduring the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, two-way trade between the two countries in 2021 soared to over US$3.3 billion.

Although the scale of investment still remains modest, there have been positive developments, with this being reflected in the number Austrian enterprises currently investing and doing business in the Vietnamese market.

Minister Son therefore suggested that businesses of the two countries step up co-operation in areas of their strength and potential, such as high technology, clean energy, climate change response, vocational training, digital transformation, pharmaceuticals, tourism, and agricultural trade.

Speaking at the forum, Amelie Gross, vice president of the WKO, thanked and highly appreciated the visit made by Minister Son, as well as the active participation of the Vietnamese business delegation at the forum, thereby highlighting their interest and desire to boost ties between businesses of the two countries.

According to Christina Schoesser, Asia director of the WKO, Vietnam represents a country with fast and stable growth, along with favourable conditions to attract Austrian businesses.

Over recent years, the country has developed into the third largest import market of Austria in Asia, as well as a potential market for investment co-operation projects for Austrian enterprises.

These businesses are typically small and medium enterprises but have strengths in niche markets that the Vietnamese side needs, especially in terms of high technology and innovation.

On this basis, the WKO wishes that Vietnamese and Austrian firms will have more opportunities for exchanges and co-operation in the future.

At the forum, with more than 20 years of experience operating in Vietnam, leaders of Austria's AVL Group introduced their experience of co-operation in the Vietnamese market to local research institutes and enterprises in the field of battery production for electric cars, as well as applicability in the field of construction and agriculture.

Ho Huy, chairman of Mai Linh Group, also underlined the necessity of finding solutions to support the group in their transition to using green energy for vehicles.

The same day saw FM Son hold a working session with Gross and other leaders, during which he requested that the WKO continue contributing to promoting economic relations by conducting vocational training activities. This should be done whilst encouraging Austrian businesses to come to the country to explore co-operation opportunities and have a voice in urging the Austrian National Assembly to quickly ratify the EU-Vietnam Investment Protection Agreement (EVIPA).